Legal Information: Illinois

Workplace Protections

Updated: 
July 10, 2020

I got fired from my job after taking time off for domestic, sexual, or gender violence. Is that legal?

The law says that your employer cannot fire you or punish you because you took off time from work to address your domestic, sexual, or gender violence issues. They also cannot fire you or punish you because you asked for or were given “accommodations” (changes) at work to help you with your domestic, sexual, or gender violence issues.1 However, your employer can still fire you or punish you for other valid reasons, such as budget cuts, not doing your job well, or reasons that have nothing to do with your domestic, sexual, or gender violence situation. For example, if you took off from work to deal with domestic, sexual, or gender violence issues and six months later, your company fired 200 workers based on budget cuts, you can be fired too.

Note: Sometimes, an employer will offer a fake reason for firing someone, to hide the real reason. If you have facts or evidence that: (1) your employer is not being truthful about why they fired you; and (2) that the real reason they fired you was because you took off time for domestic, sexual, or gender violence issues, then you might want to contact an attorney who specializes in employment discrimination or contact the Illinois Human Rights Commission.

1 820 ILCS § 180/30

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