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V Jonas Urba

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Equal Justice Under Law for New York Employment Law Matters Statewide
  • Employment Law
  • New York
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Over 20 years devoted exclusively to labor and employment law matters. Representing clients across New York, only in New York, regarding employment law and employment discrimination matters. Keen interest in human behavior and motives. Always seeking efficient, creative ways to help clients. Admitted to all of New York's federal district courts.

Practice Area
Employment Law
Employee Benefits, Employment Contracts, Employment Discrimination, Overtime & Unpaid Wages, Sexual Harassment, Whistleblower, Wrongful Termination
  • Free Consultation
    Initial 15 minute phone conference is no charge.
  • Credit Cards Accepted
  • Contingent Fees
    Most contingent fee matters are at one third (1/3) of gross amounts offered and/or accepted, before expenses and costs are subtracted.
  • Rates, Retainers and Additional Information
    Major credit cards are always welcome and preferred.
Jurisdictions Admitted to Practice
New York
New York State Office of Court Administration
ID Number: 4974333
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Professional Experience
Founding Member
Urba Law PLLC fka Urba Law Firm
- Current
Law practice exclusively devoted to employment law and employment litigation and only across New York State.
Valparaiso University School of Law
J.D. (1988)
Honors: Superior Scholarship Certificate Legal Process
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Indiana University - Indiana University-Bloomington
B.S. (1980) | Business Administration, Marketing, Finance
Professional business fraternity.
Activities: Delta Sigma Pi
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Professional Associations
National Employment Lawyers Association - New York
- Current
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New York City Bar Association
Small Law Firm Member
- Current
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State Bar of New York  # 4974333
- Current
Activities: Employment Law Section.
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New York State Bar Association
- Current
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National Employment Lawyers Association
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Websites & Blogs
Urba Employment Law
Employment Law Videos Blog
Legal Answers
9 Questions Answered
Q. How to report anonymous Mgr. Forge employee timesheet for time not worked. Intimidates other from adding actual time?
A: It looks like your pay is on an hourly basis. All employees who are paid by the hour must be paid for all time for which they are permitted to suffer labor (that is language often used by the courts). If you work hours, including overtime at 1.5 times your regular pay rate, you must be paid for those hours.

However, your employer has the right to approve or disapprove of overtime work. If a supervisor or manager directs that you cease working overtime then your continued practice appears to be insubordinate or against what your instructions were. Managers have the right to be told in advance of overtime work because they could be individually liable for overtime pat violations. They may stop or approve overtime.

Finally, if you qualify as exempt from overtime pay on a salaried pay rate then your employer could work you as many hours as it reasonably needed you to work unless those hours are discriminating you somehow or you are not truly exempt from overtime because of either you not being in a professional or executive or administrative exemption requiring discretion and/or independent judgment while you work. There are not enough facts to determine whether these actions by your manager are discriminatory nor whether they violate DOL regulations or some statutes. Good luck.
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Q. I’m a 66 year old woman I have been harassed verbally abused humiliated and threatened at work for 15 months now. I
A: You have offered two protected classes to which you belong. There may be many more. The two are your gender, female, and your age over 40. Was the harassment suffered because of your gender or your age? Remember that there are many more such as disability or perceived disability. If you were ill or caring for others who are ill or needed time off for illnesses and were mocked or ridiculed or disparately treated because of illness that would potentially be a claim of hostile environment. Also remember that under federal law, your hostile workplace, if it was a hostile workplace would need to be severe or pervasive. One example of that because of illness might be jokes about how frequently you are ill or attending doctors' appointments.

But let's stick to the classes you mentioned. Were you repeatedly asked when you planned to retire or mocked for being your age or kidded about because of your age? How were you hostilely treated because you are older? What facts might support that? Or alternatively how were you treated less well because you are a woman and maybe men were treated better.

Discriminatory harassment relates to one or more protected classes of employees who you belong to or are associated with. You have provided no examples of the specific details of the exact comments which were made, by managers or supervisors preferably, which related to protected classes. Simply being mean or nasty is not necessarily creating a hostile workplace. The laws will not make workplaces pleasant or friendly. But they will address unlawful or discriminatory behavior. This is why employment lawyers ask many, many questions and invests hundreds of hours in a single, meritorious claim with a plausible theory of recovery. A guess or hunch will not do. That's why you may need to speak with several or more employment lawyers who inquire about details. The potential clients who have taken notes or have witnesses or maybe recorded some conversations sometimes have stronger claims. How well do you recall the precise comments or behaviors of your own supervisors? How is your memory of the actions or behaviors of those you worked with? Did you ever complain although that is no longer required it helps?

Call some employment lawyers so you have a better understanding of the work that goes into all of these types of claims on behalf of you and your potential legal counsel. These are never easy, slam dunk claims but those with good facts are why we do this work. Make sure you keep looking for work and secure unemployment benefits. If you decide not to do so then any potential recovery is unlikely to be worth the effort. Mitigation of damages is a key component of these claims. It's why persons who bow out from the workplace are rarely our clients.
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Q. Is it fair that after six of employment I was told I could no longer wear my head covering without getting documents.
A: "Head covering" could mean almost anything. An employment lawyer would examine your job duties first and foremost. Does your position description or your job duties pose a physical safety threat to you or others for wearing some type of unknown head covering?

Next an employer lawyer would want to review your employee handbook to determine whether head coverings are discussed therein. Some jobs demand or require head coverings which may be part of a business dress code or other legitimate business purpose.

Then the employment lawyer might inquire whether your head covering complies or is not in conflict with the above and whether the employee had requested such covering possibly related to medical treatments or maybe for other reasons which might include social custom and/or religion. But that discussion may follow the above.

Most importantly would be the specific communication between the employee and the employer. The overwhelming number of these scenarios are usually worked out amicably between employers and employees unless there are other, underlying issues which are creating conflicts separate and apart from the head covering.

The answer to this questions is much more complex than a simple yes or no and the industry, job performed, standards, policies, and reasons from both sides must be analyzed and evaluated. In the end, it's rarely a slam dunk open and shut case regardless because employment claims are so unique and so heavily dependent on timelines and factual details. This is especially true here because it looks like the employer initially had no problem with the covering but it must treat employees similarly. Every once in a while an employee or employer might create an issue which may not be supported by practices, customs, or logic and those situations need to be flushed out carefully. We can't just manufacture wearing something or prohibiting something without a uniform policy or procedure supported by rational thought. Each scenario must stand on its own specific facts and not disparately impact others. There are reasons for most all policies or practices and they are not simply manufactured to aggravate or antagonize a group of persons who are in a protected class. For example, if some group decided that pierced body part A or body part B with jewelry is recognized within their protected class but no one else had ever heard of that practice tied to that protected class of employee that employee would likely be challenged to prove their practice is protected as associated with the class to which they belong and requiring such proof would not, on its face, be discriminatory.
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Urba Law PLLC
295 Madison Ave FL 1200V
NEW YORK, NY 10017
Telephone: (212) 731-4776
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