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What’s the burden of proof in a workplace discrimination claim?

On Behalf of | Nov 30, 2022 | Employment Law

If you face any form of discrimination at your workplace, you can bring a claim against your employer. You may be entitled to certain damages depending on the outcome of your claim. 

However, you must have sufficient proof for this to happen. In civil claims, you need merely prove your claim is more likely true than not, or a “preponderance of the evidence.” That said, you still need solid evidence to help your claim.

What evidence do you need?

Usually, the burden of proof in discrimination claims is on you, the claimant. It means that your employer does not have to prove that they did not act discriminatively. For instance, if you believe you were unlawfully terminated due to your age, gender or disability, you must show that your employer’s actions amounted to discrimination.

Communication records can provide crucial leads. Text messages, emails or other forms of communication between you and your employer that point toward discrimination can go a long way in proving your claim. In addition, supporting testimony from colleagues can add weight to your case.

In some cases, medical records, previous performance reviews and your personnel file can also provide useful information to your claim.

What should you do first?

Gathering relevant evidence is the first thing you ought to do. Keep a record of specific actions and statements made by your employer that could amount to discrimination. Do not overlook subtle things like being reassigned unfavorable work shifts or getting sidelined at work.

Lastly, consider seeking appropriate guidance on the steps to get justice. These include the legal options at your disposal, such as filing a discrimination claim.