If you believe that you have been wrongfully terminated from your employment due to unlawful discrimination, there are a few things to consider before filing a lawsuit to seek redress:

1. In order to file a lawsuit regarding most types of discrimination that are unlawful under federal law (for example, age, gender, disability or national origin discrimination), you must first file an administrative complaint with a governmental agency such as a state division of Human Rights, or the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

2. As to most federal claims, you must allow the administrative agency its statutory time to investigate the complaint.

3. As to most federal claims, you must receive a “Notice of Right to Sue,” and then commence your federal lawsuit within 90 days of receipt of such letter.

4. As to some federal claims, the above procedure is unnecessary. For example, if you are a victim of race discrimination, you may be able to file within three years of the employer’s adverse job action under 42 U.S.C. section 1981.

5. State and local law may provide additional and different protections. For example, in New York State, and aggrieved employee can file either under the state Human Rights Law, or, for example, under New York City law.

6. As to all of the above, it is often a difficult task to determine whether you have a viable unlawful discrimination claim. Therefore, it is highly advisable to consult with a qualified attorney familiar with employment discrimination law, and to do so sufficiently ahead of the time deadlines in order for the attorney to prepare and file your lawsuit in time. Missing a “statute of limitations” is fatal to a lawsuit.

7. Before filing a lawsuit, you should carefully consider other alternatives, such as retaining a qualified attorney to attempt to negotiate a severance or a settlement of your potential employment discrimination claims.

8. Before filing a lawsuit, you should carefully consider the downside of filing a lawsuit, including, for example, the public nature of the filing, and the cost in time and money of litigation, not to mention them emotional stress. Many attorneys will take an employment discrimination case on a contingency or partial contingency fee basis, where the attorney is not paid, or not fully paid, unless the case is successfully resolved.