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Workplace Bullying May Give Rise to a New Jersey Employment Discrimination Lawsuit

Reports of bullying seem to permeate recent news reports, but most people consider this more of an issue in schools than in the workplace. However, a national study by CareerBuilder found that 35 percent of employees reported being bullied at work. This bullying results in 16 percent of workers suffering medical conditions and 17 percent quitting their job.

Many employees subject to bullying in the workplace do not realize that they may refuse to tolerate such behavior. Bullying behavior can create a hostile work environment and give rise to legal rights for employees who suffer health-related conditions or feel compelled to terminate their employment.

Employees experience many types of bullying that may create a hostile work environment

Examples of the many forms of bullying the CareerBuilder study found that may contribute to a hostile work environment include:

  • Verbal abuse of employees in front of peers
  • False accusations of mistakes
  • Constant unjustified criticism
  • Taking credit for another’s work efforts
  • Ridiculing employees for physical characteristics
  • Ignoring employee complaints about mistreatment, discrimination or disparate treatment
  • Applying different criteria/standards toward an employee in relation to those used to evaluate others
  • Derogatory gossip about employees
  • Barring employees from meetings

What you should do if co-workers or supervisors are bullying you?

If you have been bullied at work, you should first speak to the party that has engaged in the abusive conduct. While this can be enough to discourage the bully, the next step is to escalate the situation by reporting the behavior to your supervisor. If your supervisor turns a blind eye to the inappropriate conduct, you also may need to report it to the human resources department.

While these measures may be sufficient to discourage continued workplace discrimination, you should keep records regarding acts of bullying and any reports made to supervisors or management.  This information will be important if you must pursue a claim for hostile work environment discrimination.

If you are the victim of bullying in the workplace, our dedicated hostile work environment lawyers can explain your legal rights. We understand the mental stress and physical impact of intense ridicule and bullying.

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Neil H. Deutsch

Neil H. Deutsch has been practicing law for over 35 years and is known as a skilled negotiator in employment and discrimination law. He believes in a bottom-line approach of risk analysis and cost effectiveness for his clients. "Case evaluation is something we take seriously," says Mr. Deutsch who seeks top net dollar for his…

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Bruce L. Atkins
Senior Partner

Bruce L. Atkins is the Senior Managing Partner at Deutsch Atkins & Kleinfeldt P.C., a prominent plaintiff employment law firm in the tri-state area. Mr. Atkins believes employees’ rights should be aggressively pursued when they’ve been wrongfully dealt with by their employers. He brings this philosophy to his practice when considering each case and its…

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Adam J. Kleinfeldt

Adam J. Kleinfeldt joined Deutsch Atkins & Kleinfeldt, P.C. in March of 2015.  He primarily represents individuals in employment litigation such as discrimination, retaliation and whistle blowing matters. He has extensive experience in all phases of the litigation process. Adam has obtained significant results for his clients, including a $525,000 jury verdict in a sexual…

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Debra M. McGarvey

Debra M. McGarvey joined Deutsch Atkins & Kleinfeldt, P.C. in December 2019. She has extensive experience defending employees and employers in state and federal court in employment litigation matters. She has represented clients on various issues arising out of the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (NJLAD), the New Jersey Conscientious Employee Protection Act (CEPA), the…

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Carly Skarbnik Meredith

Carly Skarbnik Meredith, Esq. is a Partner at the firm. Carly has focused her career exclusively in the field of employment law. She has a plethora of experience representing both employees and employers with their employment issues, needs, and concerns. She believes representing both employees and employers has made her an extremely well-rounded client advocate.…


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