Workers’ Rights Manual, 2014 Edition

The Employment Justice Center’s Workers’ Rights Manual is an attempt to provide a comprehensive source of legal information about the rights of workers in the Washington, D.C. area.

Almost without exception, the law from the state where the worker was employed is the law to apply to any potential claim. Thus, a Maryland resident who works in D.C. must look to D.C. law. Where possible, we have included information on Maryland and Virginia claims; however, a complete discussion of Maryland and Virginia laws is outside the scope of this manual.

The Employment Justice Center is very grateful to all of those who volunteered significant amounts of time to draft and revise the Sixth Edition of the Workers’ Rights Manual, as well as to those who have contributed to prior editions. Individual contributors to the 6th Edition are acknowledged at the beginning of each chapter.

Chet Levitt Fund for Employment Law

EJC is deeply grateful to the Chet Levitt Fund for Employment Law, which has consistently provided significant funding towards the production of this manual through its six revisions, including its original publication.  Mr. Levitt was deeply committed to his work in employment and civil rights law until 1996 when he lost his life in a senseless act of violence.  His family and friends, with the assistance of the National Employee Rights Institute (NERI) established this Fund in his memory, dedicated to ending employment discrimination by providing financial and other support for important employment litigation on behalf of employees.  The Fund has made a significant contribution to the cost of publishing this Manual so that workers’ rights advocates can have some assistance in their legal research and advocacy on behalf of low-wage workers throughout the D.C. metropolitan area.  We are proud to have Chet’s name and memory associated with this Manual.  If you would like to contact the fund to either receive a grant or make a donation, please contact:  The Chet Levitt Fund for Employment Law, 1150 Connecticut Avenue, N.W., Suite 900, Washington, D.C. 20036-4104, (202) 862-4353 (phone), (202) 862-4331 (fax),

D.C. Bar, Labor & Employment Law Section

EJC is also grateful to the members of the Labor and Employment Law Section of the D.C. Bar for their generous donation toward the publication of the 6th Edition.


This manual is intended to provide general information regarding legal rights relating to employment in the Washington metropolitan area. It is not a substitute for legal advice from a lawyer about a specific factual situation. In addition, because laws and procedures frequently change, the Employment Justice Center cannot ensure that the information in this manual is current nor be responsible for any use to which it is put. Experienced counsel should be consulted for current legal advice.

For more information about specific employment laws or to provide corrections or information that you believe would be useful for inclusion in this manual, please contact the Employment Justice Center at (202) 828-9675 or You can also visit the Employment Justice Center’s website at

Workers' Rights Manual

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