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New Jersey’s Law Against Discrimination (LAD)

In the context of employment discrimination law, the federal statutes on the subject — the Civil Rights Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, etc. — tend to get the most attention while the parallel state laws fall by the wayside. Employees in New Jersey, however, enjoy the protection of one of the most extensive employment discrimination laws in the country. The Law Against Discrimination (LAD) provides coverage and protection for New Jersey workers that in some areas goes far beyond what similar federal statutes provide.

The employment discrimination provisions of the LAD have several key distinctions from similar federal laws:

  • The LAD covers all employers regardless of company size. Similar federal laws only cover businesses with at least 15 regular employees (20 for age discrimination).
  • The LAD protects employees from all the same bases of discrimination and federal laws and additionally prohibits discrimination based on marital or domestic status, gender identity or expression, military service and affectional or sexual orientation.
  • The LAD allows complainants to proceed directly to New Jersey state court whereas federal laws require an administrative complaint to be filed with the EEOC first.

The Division on Civil Rights of New Jersey’s Office of Attorney General is responsible for administering and enforcing the provisions of the LAD. This office provides an administrative complaint procedure and may order an offending employer to improve conditions as well as pay damages for lost pay, pain and humiliation and attorney fees. Victims of discrimination have the option of using this procedure or proceeding directly to court to have their complaint evaluated by a jury.

Neil  H.  Deutsch Attorney Photo
Neil H. Deutsch
Retired

About 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…

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Bruce L. Atkins
Senior Partner

About Bruce L. Atkins is regarded as one of New Jersey’s premier practitioners of employment and civil litigation. He has been selected to the New Jersey Super Lawyers prestigious list every year since 2005.  This honor, bestowed upon a recipient by the votes of his peers, is a powerful nod to the skill Mr. Atkins…

Adam  J.  Kleinfeldt Attorney Photo
Adam J. Kleinfeldt
Partner

About Adam J. Kleinfeldt joined Deutsch Atkins & Kleinfeldt, P.C. in March of 2015.  He primarily represents individuals in employment litigations 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 some of his clients, including a $525,000 jury verdict…

Diane  Englander  Peyser Attorney Photo
Diane Englander Peyser
Attorney

About Diane Englander Peyser joined Deutsch Atkins & Kleinfeldt, P.C. in September 2018 where she represents employees in wrongful termination, retaliation, harassment, and discrimination matters. Prior to joining Deutsch Atkins & Kleinfeldt, P.C., Diane represented clients in all aspects of employment law on behalf of employees involving unemployment appeals, claims of sexual harassment, LGBT discrimination,…

Debra M. McGarvey Attorney Photo
Debra M. McGarvey
Attorney

About 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),…

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