Palm Beach Gardens Military Discrimination Attorney
Members of the armed forces bear the burden of protecting our country. Many of those who serve do so as members of National Guard or Reserve units that can be called up to active duty on a moment’s notice. When this happens, service members often have to leave behind their civilian jobs for a period of time.
Federal law protects the rights of service members to return to such jobs upon their discharge from service. And more broadly speaking, Florida employers cannot fire or refuse to hire someone based on their military service or status. An experienced Palm Beach Gardens military discrimination attorney can help you if you are a current or former service member who has faced such illegal actions by civilian employers. At the Sconzo Law Office, P.A., we represent individuals who have not been afforded their full rights under the law.
Know Your Rights Under the USERRA
The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) is the principal federal law that protects service members who wish to return to their civilian jobs upon completion of their active duty military service. Among the rights protected by USERRA:
- Re-employment. If you have 5 years or less of cumulative service in the uniformed services, you are entitled to return to your previous civilian job provided you gave the employer advance written notice of your service and you returned to work (or reapplied for your job) in a “timely manner” when your service ended.
- Non-discrimination. An employer cannot deny you initial employment, reemployment, or deny you retention or promotion in your job based on your past or present membership in a uniformed service. Nor can an employer retaliate against you for assisting someone else who is trying to exercise their rights under the USERRA.
- Health insurance. If you are required to leave your civilian job to perform military service, you can elect to continue your employer-based health insurance for you and your family for up to 2 years while in the military. And if you later return to the same civilian job, you generally have the right to be reinstated to the employer’s health insurance plan without any exclusions for pre-existing conditions or waiting periods.
In addition to the USERRA, the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) also enables certain eligible employees the right to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave when a family member has been called up to active duty in a foreign country. Employees can also take up to 26 workweeks of unpaid leave to care for a covered service member with a serious injury or illness.
Contact the Sconzo Law Office Today
While everyone pays lip service to the idea of honoring those who serve in uniform, many Florida employers do not back up those words by following the law with respect to those who served and now wish to return to civilian work. Our Palm Beach Gardens military discrimination lawyers can assist you in asserting your rights under the law. Contact the Sconzo Law Office, P.A., today to schedule a complimentary consultation.