One of the bedrocks of America is, at least in theory, the right of political and social freedom. This idea, that American citizens have unalienable rights, revolutionized the American experience, bringing millions of immigrants from all over the world to participate in opportunities that were previously unavailable. Unfortunately, even today, many Americans and Colorado residents have their basic civil rights infringed upon.
If you have had your civil rights violated, whether you’ve been discriminated against in the workplace or you’ve been abused by law enforcement, among other civil rights, you need to contact Denver CO civil rights attorney Raymond K. Bryant. At the Civil Rights Litigation Group, we are one of Denver’s leading voices for victims of civil rights abuses, and we have the tools and legal know-how to get your case to courts, litigate vigorously, and seek compensation for damages incurred.
For a free, no-obligation consultation with our law firm, call the Civil Rights Litigation Group today at 720-515-6165.
Understanding civil rights in Colorado
Civil rights in the United States (and Colorado) are the rights of individuals to receive equal treatment from unfair practices and discrimination. There are many civil rights laws aimed at protected certain individuals. The most famous protection is the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which was a landmark civil rights and labor law that outlawed discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. In Colorado, the Colorado Civil Rights law also prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and marriage to a coworker. According to both federal and state laws, discrimination is illegal when it’s based on:
Elements of a civil rights case
You may have a civil rights case when another individual has discriminated against you in a protected setting, such as in an education setting, housing setting, or employment setting. For instance, if an employer has made a hiring/firing or employment decision based on the above-mentioned protections, you may certainly have a discrimination case.
Furthermore, civil rights abuses can occur in the following ways:
What you should do if you have a case
If you were the victim of a civil rights abuse, whether that was discrimination in the workplace, Constitutional Rights abuses, or police brutality, the first step is to contact an experienced civil rights attorney in Colorado. With in-depth knowledge of Colorado and federal civil rights laws, as well as experience representing individuals just like you in courts, an attorney can help you combat the abuse, seek justice, and possibly recover compensation for damages incurred.
Before starting a discrimination case, it’s important to note that you must file employment discrimination claims within six months of the alleged act; the deadline is one year for housing claims and 60 days for public accommodations claims. In many cases, your civil rights abuse claim will begin with filing an intake packet, which is reviewed by the Colorado Civil Rights Division.
Contact the Civil Rights Litigation Group today
No matter the circumstances, if you have had your civil rights violated, you need to take action and contact an attorney. Remaining silent solely promotes further discriminatory acts or abuses in the future; as such, filing a lawsuit for a Denver civil rights violation can help you seek justice while preventing further abuses in the future.
There are deadlines to filing a civil rights claim, so don’t hesitate and contact Denver civil rights attorney Raymond K. Bryant at the Civil Rights Litigation Group today. For a free consultation, call us at 720-515-6165.
Every worker in Colorado, and throughout the United States, deserves to paid for the work that he/she conducted. When workers are required (or voluntarily) to work overtime, they also deserve the necessary overtime pay. Unfortunately, there have been many cases right here in Denver where employers didn’t pay their employees’ the correct wages as well as overtime wages, resulting in unpaid overtime.
In Colorado, state and federal laws determine how much (and when) an employee must be paid. However, if your employer hasn’t paid the correct wages or overtime wages, you need to contact the leading Denver unpaid wages attorney as soon as possible. At the Civil Rights Litigation Group, we’re experienced employee rights and trial attorneys, and we boast the know-how and litigation strategies to fight against workplace injustices. Don’t ignore unpaid overtime, and call attorney Raymond K. Bryant at (720) 515-6165.
In the meantime, you can learn more about unpaid overtime below.
Unpaid overtime and wages
For every hour that an employee works, he/she is rightfully owed at least the minimum wage. In Colorado, that minimum wage is $9.30 per hour. Although the federal minimum wage is $7.25, any employee working in Colorado is owed the state minimum wage. In cases where the city or county minimum wage is higher than the state minimum wage, employees are owed the higher amount. If your employer has underpaid you, such as by paying the federal minimum wage, you may have an unpaid wage claim.
Unpaid wage claims do occur, but the most common type of employee wage violation is unpaid overtime. In short, employees in Colorado are entitled to overtime if they work more than 40 hours a week, more than 12 hours a day, or more than 12 consecutive hours. For overtime hours, employers must pay their employees time-and-a-half, which equates to an extra 50% of your hourly rate on top of your regular pay. This means that if you’re paid $10/hr, your overtime pay is $15/hr.
If your employer has failed to pay you adequate overtime hours, the unpaid overtime equals the difference between what you should have been paid and what you were paid.
Exemptions to overtime pay
Not all employees are entitled to overtime pay. Hourly, non-exempt employees have a legal right to overtime, but exempt employees might not be able to claim overtime. The most common examples include outside salespeople as well as white-collar employees who conduct managerial or high-level administrative work. Other exempt employees include:
- Salespersons, parts-persons, and mechanics employed by automobile, truck, or farm implement (retail) dealers
- Salespersons employed by trailer, aircraft, and boat (retail) dealers
- Sales employees of retail or service industries paid on a commission basis
- Employees of the ski industry performing duties directly related to ski area operations for skiing or snowboarding
- Employees of the medical transportation industry who are scheduled to work 24-hour shifts
Penalties for unpaid overtime and wages
If your employer has failed to pay your overtime wages, your employer may be susceptible to certain penalties under federal or Colorado law. These penalties are typically added to the wage difference that the employer owes his/her employee. For instance, federal laws state that employees have the right to ask for liquidated damages regarding overtime wage violations. These liquidated damages are designed to cover financial losses, such as bounced checks and late charges.
Colorado law also provides when the employee’s final paycheck doesn’t arrive on time or include everything that the employee is owed. For instance, if your final paycheck doesn’t include the overtime wages, you may be entitled to 125% of the unpaid wages for the first $7,500 owed and 50% of the unpaid wages for any amount owed over $7,500.
How to file a wage claim or lawsuit
When you’re working overtime, you deserve every penny that you’re owed by your employer. As such, if your employer is shorting your paycheck by avoiding legally owed overtime wages, then you need to contact a Denver employee rights attorney as soon as possible. With the guidance and counsel of your attorney, you can file a complaint about unpaid overtime with the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment (CDLE); you can also file a lawsuit in court.
Contact the wage and hour law attorneys at the Civil Rights Litigation Group
It’s important to acquire expert legal help when filing a complaint with the CDLE or filing a lawsuit in court. At the Civil Rights Litigation Group in Denver, CO, we have helped numerous individuals with their wage and unpaid overtime claims, and we boast the resources and know-how to help you too.
If your employer hasn’t paid you the amount that you’re owed, then call Denver attorney Raymond Bryant at the Civil Rights Litigation Group today! Call 720-515-6165.