Charlotte Religious Discrimination Lawyer

This country was founded upon the free exercise of religion, as codified in the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. In the employment context, religious discrimination occurs when an employee is treated adversely by their employer because of their religion. Under both federal and state law, employers are prohibited from discriminating against individuals because of their religion in hiring, firing, or in other terms and conditions of employment. Employers are also required to reasonably accommodate the religious practices of an employee or prospective employee, unless to do so would create an undue hardship or burden on the employer.

Generally, employers may not schedule examinations or other selection activities in conflict with an employee’s religious needs, maintain a restrictive dress code, or refuse to allow the observance of the Sabbath or religious holiday, unless the employer can prove that doing otherwise would create an undue hardship. The requirement to accommodate an employee’s religious beliefs applies not only to schedule changes or leave for religious observances, but also to such things as dress or grooming practices that employees have for religious reasons.

While employers often cry “undue hardship” in religious discrimination cases, it is important to fully probe and critically evaluate that defense. Generally, ordinary administrate costs, or the minor inconvenience of scheduling changes, will not constitute undue hardship or permit an employer to interfere with an employee’s right to be free of religious discrimination in the workplace.

Often times, religious discrimination claims are fact dependent and require the expertise of counsel who has experience with religious discrimination claims. If you have been the victim of religious discrimination, we encourage you to contact us.