In a disturbing trend that has developed in employment lawsuits over the past few years, individual employees are increasingly being sued personally for their involvement in workplace decisions. In the chart below, we summarize the potential for personal liability of individual executives, supervisors, decision-makers and even co-workers under several of the major federal and New York employment laws. While we canvass many of the areas of most significant risk, this list is not intended to be exhaustive and addresses select statutes. Moreover, our focus is on the law, to the extent that such law is developed, in the Second Circuit and in New York courts.
Based on the potential for individual liability under various statutes, it is imperative that employers train their employees, particularly supervisory employees, regarding compliance with employment laws and the potential for individual liability. Employers must also remain vigilant about updating their handbooks to reflect the latest developments under the employment laws and educate their Human Resources professionals and managers about related changes in employment policies.
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