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How to Properly Document Employer Retaliation

March 26, 2021

When employers fire an employee, they try to keep it under wraps from other employees if they did it out of retaliation. Instead, they point to other ‘issues’ that they faced with the terminated employee. This can be anything from a poor work ethic to attitude problems to performance issues.

If the employee was terminated because he/she asked for worker compensation, this is employer retaliation, which is illegal in Illinois.

Documenting Employment Retaliation

Over the years, Illinois courts have recognized several methods that prove employment retaliation. Some of them include the following:

Recording the Way It Is Reported

You cannot have a claim if you do not have proof that you were discriminated against because you took part in a protected activity. So make sure that you have a copy of the complaint you filed with the employer or HR. This can include emails and hard copies and even calls.

Prove Employer Awareness

You also need to prove that your employer was aware that you participated in the protected activity. For instance, you can produce the form that HR gave you to fill since it has to go through your boss as well. It is also a good idea to prove (if applicable) that he/she knew about the protected activity before retaliating against it.

Maintain a Paper Trail

If you are being retaliated against, chances are your access to your work PC will be cut off at some point to ensure you don’t save any incriminating documents. Be ready to gather evidence from a file that is not connected to company servers. Keep hard copies of all emails or communication you received that are negative in tone. This includes:

  • Emails that prove a supervisor was micromanaging your work.

  • Post and pre-protected action employment reviews.

  • Harassing notes you received from employees or your employer after you took the protected action.

  • Emails from workers detailing conversations they had with your employer which incriminates him/her. If they told your colleagues about any negative action they were going to take against you, you should have proof of it.

  • Demotion notices.

The aforementioned documents can help your attorney create a rock-solid case that can protect your best interests. At the Law Office of Michael T. Smith, we protect brave whistleblowers who expose illegal activities in their company and other protected actions they participate in. Don’t let your employer get away with employment retaliation. Get in touch with us for a consultation in Schaumburg, IL today.