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Retaliation Claims under Title VII – Brief Overview

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act provides: “It shall be an unlawful employment practice for an employer to discriminate against any of his employees…because he has opposed any practice made an unlawful employment practice by this subchapter, or because he has made a charge, testified, assisted, or participated in any manner in an investigation, proceeding, or hearing under this subchapter.”  42 U.S.C. Section 2000e-3(a).  This is known as Title VII’s “anti-retaliation” provision.

To establish a claim for retaliation under the anti-retaliation provision, a plaintiff must demonstrate: (1) she engaged in “protected activity” under Title VII; (2) the employer took an adverse employment action against her; and (3) there was a causal connection between her participation in the protected activity and the adverse employment action.  Moore v. City of Philadelphia, 461 F.3d 331 (3d Cir. 2006).

Under the “protected activity” prong, Title VII protects those who participate in certain Title VII proceedings, or those who oppose unlawful discrimination practices.  The plaintiff must have a good faith belief that the conduct that she opposes is unlawful.

Adverse employment actions can take many forms including, but not limited to, termination, demotion, suspension, or even reassignment to a less desirable job.

If you think you might be a victim of retaliation under Title VII, please contact the experienced lawyers at Sidkoff, Pincus & Green, who are licensed to practice law in all courts in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.