As a general rule, if a federal, state, or local law grants employees the right to engage in an activity or to enjoy a benefit, employees should never be disciplined, discharged, or otherwise retaliated against for requesting or attempting to do so.
To list a few key examples, state law prohibits employers from discharging employees for engaging in the following activities:
Garnishment/child support. An employer may not discharge an employee because the person has or had his or her earnings garnished for any one indebtedness (GA Code Sec. 18-4-7) or for any child support garnishments (GA Code Sec. 19-6-33).
Judicial proceeding. No worker may be discharged, disciplined, or otherwise penalized for absence from work because of attendance at a judicial proceeding in response to a subpoena, summons for jury duty, or other court order or process (GA Code Sec. 34-1-3).
Whistleblowing. A public employee may not be discharged or otherwise discriminated against for making a complaint or disclosing information to a public employer about fraud, waste, or abuse in or relating to state programs and operations for which the employer is responsible (GA Code Sec. 45-1-4).
An employee claiming wrongful discharge has the burden of proving his or her case. The employee may use circumstantial evidence to satisfy this burden. As a result, it is essential for ...