Military Service or Status

USERRA is an acronym for The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act- of 1994. The law protects the reemployment rights of service members when they return from a period of service in the uniformed services, including persons called up from the reserves or National Guard. The law prohibits employer discrimination based on military service or obligation.

Protections under USERRA

A few examples of how USERRA protects veterans are:

  • Veterans have an absolute right to have their jobs restored when returning from active duty. Furthermore, veterans are entitled to benefits that they would have attained had they not been absent.
  • Employers cannot refuse to hire military service members just because of their military service.
  • Employers cannot deny any “benefit of employment” due to military service. USERRA’s protection of benefits of employment includes any “advantage, profit, privilege, gain, status, account or interest.”
  • Harassment of military service members or former service members is illegal.
  • Employers cannot refuse to hire a veteran, cannot fire, harass or demote a veteran due to a service-related disability. If a veteran can perform all the duties of the job with a reasonable accommodation, the employer must provide the accommodation.

Legal Help When You Encounter USERRA Violations

If your employer violates USERRA, which is a Federal law, contact a New York employment law attorney for legal guidance. A New York employment law attorney can assess your situation and represent you in a USERRA claim and determine if your employer also violated New York employment law.

At the Law Offices of William Cafaro, we have represented clients successfully in a wide range of employer violations of Federal and New York State laws and local ordinances including discrimination, wage and hour, retaliation, prevailing wage and USERRA claims.

If you believe your employer is in violation of USERRA, it is advisable to file a claim as soon as possible.

Possible Remedies for USERRA Violations

Remedies available for the plaintiff in USERRA claims may include the following:

  • Job reinstatement
  • Back pay
  • Lost benefits
  • Restored vacation
  • Retroactive seniority
  • Pension adjustments
  • Corrected personnel files
  • Lost promotional opportunities
  • Attorney’s fees
  • Liquidated damages for a willful violation

Contact a NY Employment Law Attorney

If you are a veteran returning from active duty and encounter employer violations of USERRA as you seek re-employment or a new job, take advantage of a free case evaluation at the Law Offices of William Cafaro. Call our New York law firm today at (212) 583-7400 to arrange a consultation to find out if you have grounds for a USERRA claim.

Law Offices of William Cafaro


108 West 39th Street
Suite 602
New York, NY, 10018


Fax: (212) 583-7401

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