Discrimination in the Workplace

Chicago Discrimination Lawyer

Protecting Employees’ Rights in Illinois Since 1993

Were you discriminated against at the workplace? Determining whether or not you have a valid claim may be difficult. Without the understanding of federal and state laws, you may be unable to ascertain whether your employer's actions are illegal.

Illinois is an employment-at-will state, which means that your employer may terminate your employment for any reason, as long as it is not an illegal one. A fine line exists between an employer's unfair treatment and an employer's illegal treatment. Only a skilled discrimination law attorney can recognize what conduct is merely unfair verses what conduct is illegal.

At the Law Offices of Fern Trevino we have defended the rights of Chicago employees for over 25 years. Founding attorney Fern Trevino has been ranked as one of the top three leading plaintiffs' employment lawyers in Chicago by Leading Lawyer Network. If you believe you were discriminated against, contact us today.


Turn to an attorney who has consistently earned the highest rating for ethics and legal proficiency throughout her career. Call the Law Offices of Fern Trevino.


What is Discrimination in the Workplace?

You may have a claim for illegal discrimination if you were not hired, or were terminated, demoted, passed over for a promotion, denied an increase, a bonus, training or other benefits, subjected to unwarranted discipline, or were otherwise subjected to less favorable treatment in the workplace based on one of the following protected classes:

Legally, the term "discrimination" means less favorable treatment because of a person's gender, sexual orientation, pregnancy, race, national origin, age, disability or religious beliefs. Discrimination may occur when an employer makes decisions on hiring, promotions, pay rates, benefits, job assignments, training, and discipline.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex and/or national origin. Section 1981 of the Civil Rights Act also forbids discrimination on the basis of race. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act ("ADEA") forbids discrimination against employees who are age 40 or older. The American's with Disability Act (ADA) prohibits discrimination based on disability and requires employers to reasonably accommodate persons with disabilities, unless doing so would constitute an undue hardship for the employer. The Law Offices of Fern Trevino can review your facts to determine whether you have a claim, and if so, what legal recourse may be available to you.

How to Prove Discrimination at Work

Federal, state, and local laws prohibit employers from making those decisions based on the protected categories above. Employees often worry that they will not be able to prove discrimination, but courts recognize that discrimination can be subtle and employers can be smart to cover their tracks. Therefore, direct evidence such as “smoking gun” statements or documents is not required to prove discrimination. Courts allow employees to prove discrimination by circumstantial evidence, such as bits and pieces of information that taken together, present a mosaic of discrimination.

Discrimination Claims and Retaliation

The law forbids retaliation against employees for having complained about or reported illegal discrimination. If you have complained of discrimination, and after you complained, your employer demoted or terminated you, or diminished your compensation and/or benefits, you may have a claim for retaliation. To prove a claim of retaliation, you must prove that you suffered an adverse employment action because you complained about or reported what you reasonably believed was discrimination.

Contact a Chicago Discrimination Lawyer Today at (312) 386-7524

The Law Offices of Fern Trevino has extensive experience ferreting out facts that support a discriminatory motive. If you were discriminated against in the workplace, turn to an employment law firm that has been trusted in Chicago since 1993. Reach out to the Law Offices of Fern Trevino today.

Related Pages

The firm can evaluate your facts to determine if they are sufficient to support a claim of discrimination and/or retaliation. Call (312) 386-7524.

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