Religious Discrimination

Austin Religious Discrimination Attorney

Laws Protecting Employees From Religious  Discrimination

Both the Texas Labor Code and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act prohibit discrimination on the basis of religion. These laws make it unlawful for an employer to discriminate against an employee based on their religion or lack of religion when making decisions related to hiring, firing, promoting, training, compensating, or other terms of employment.  In addition, these laws prohibit an employer from retaliating against an employee for opposing an unlawful act of religious discrimination.

Religious discrimination can include (1) considering an employee’s religion in hiring, firing, or promotion; (2) harassment of an employee based on her religion; and (3) failure to accommodate an employee’s religious needs in certain circumstances.  For example, an employer may potentially discriminate by firing an employee after she misses work due to a religious holiday.  In addition, an employer may potentially discriminate against an employee by making fun of religious garments, criticizing the employee’s strong faith, or giving an employee a hard time over their dietary needs.

As exceptions to religious discrimination laws exist for certain employers and because an employee’s rights will depend on specific factual circumstances, if you believe you have been discriminated against on the basis of religion you should contact a religious discrimination attorney.

Employee Remedies For Religious Discrimination

In a lawsuit for religious discrimination, an employee may be able to recover:

  • Lost wages and benefits to the time of trial
  • Lost wages and benefits into the future
  • Compensatory damages
  • Punitive damages
  • Attorney’s Fees

Prior to filing a lawsuit, an employee must file a charge of religious discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and/or Texas Workforce Commission (TWC).  These agencies enforce the laws protecting employees from age discrimination in the workplace.

What To Do If Your Employer Discriminates Against You Because of Your Religion

Contact a lawyer immediately, and preferably a lawyer who routinely represents employees in employment litigation.  If you are not able to contact an attorney, you should contact the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or the Texas Workforce Commission, Civil Rights Division.  To preserve your rights under the law for this type of discrimination, you must act quickly and typically must follow certain procedural steps, such as filing a charge of discrimination with either the EEOC or TWC.  Lastly, take thorough notes regarding everything discriminatory that is being said or done to you and keep all records related to your employment.  These notes and records may prove invaluable in a later lawsuit.

Additional Resources for Learning About Religious Discrimination

EEOC Fact Sheet on Religious Discrimination

Workplace Fairness Fact Sheet on Religious Discrimination

Questions and Answers Regarding Religious Discrimination


If you feel that you have been subjected to religious discrimination and wish to speak to an Austin religious discrimination lawyer at the Cook Law Firm, please submit a case review form.