California workers seeking to file a work discrimination claim must decide which dispute resolution process works best for their situation. Depending on the elements of the claim, certain disputes benefit from a particular type of resolution. Lawsuits are the most formal, while alternative dispute solutions like mediation and arbitration are informal and non-binding.
Many employers include arbitration clauses in the hiring contracts. Most people don’t expect to engage in a dispute with their employers; therefore, new hires are less likely to object to arbitration clauses. In many work discrimination cases, the hiring agreements favor the employer, making these claims challenging.
Dispute resolution categories
Mediation is a resolution that employs a neutral third party to help parties in a dispute reach an agreement. The professional mediator works to get each side a fair share of what they’re asking to settle their differences. In arbitration, a neutral party, such as a judge, will hear each side and make a ruling. The judge’s ruling is final and not eligible for appeal. These are the least informal and least costly dispute resolutions.
Litigation is the most expensive and time-consuming dispute resolution option and often yields the greatest settlement offer. The argument is taken into court and heard before a judge and possibly a jury. The opposing lawyers present their cases in hopes of reaching a winning verdict. Many employers and clients will work with their respective attorneys in work discrimination cases to reach a settlement during the pretrial process.
Discrimination based on age, race, religion or identity is against the law and is the basis for work discrimination claims. Working in a hostile workplace is stressful and can lead to chronic health problems, low productivity and financial losses. Appropriate resolutions create better workplace relationships and foster safer working conditions.