An Overview of the New York State and City Human Rights Law (Update)

(145 Ratings)

Produced on: February 09, 2018

Course Format On Demand Audio

Taught by


Course Description

Time 52 minutes
Difficulty Beginner

In 1945, two decades before Congress adopted the 1964 Civil Rights Act, New York State adopted the first state anti-discrimination law in America. In 1975, New York City adopted its own anti-discrimination law, now widely regarded as the broadest anti-discrimination statute in the United States. Navigating the complex interplay between these two vital laws against competing federal obligations, continues to challenge advocates, employers, employees and the courts.

In this program, Robinson & Cole civil rights and employment law partner Matthew Miklave provides a comprehensive overview of these two statutes, exploring the similarities and differences between them. The program will explore the laws’ definitions of protected classes, the availability of remedies, time limitations on bringing actions, elements of claims and substantive and procedural defenses. Mr. Miklave will also focus on recent amendments extending protections to interns, expanding protections for the disabled, victims of domestic violence, and those experiencing complications from pregnancy and childbirth. After watching this program, attorneys will be better prepared to counsel their clients on the implications of these laws for workers, interns, applicants and employers living, working, and doing business in New York State and New York City.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Summarize the essence of Discrimination Theory
  2. Recognize protected classes
  3. Review procedure and substantive rights


Matthew Miklave

Robinson & Cole

Matthew Miklave is a partner in our New York and Stamford offices and a member in the Labor, Employment, Benefits + Immigration Group. He represents employers and management in all areas of civil rights, employment relations, and traditional labor law, including issues arising under federal and state antidiscrimination, antiretaliation, noncompete and restrictive covenants, labor, wage and hour, plant closing, family leave, retirement, election, and civil rights statutes.

Mr. Miklave represents employers in defense of lawsuits brought under Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act; the Age Discrimination in Employment Act; the Americans with Disabilities Act; the National Labor Relations Act; the Help America Vote Act; the Civil Rights Acts of 1866 and 1871; the Worker Adjustment Retraining Notification Act; the Family and Medical Leave Act; the Employment Retirement Income Security Act; the Fair Labor Standards Act; the Employee Polygraph Protection Act; and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as well as equivalent state and local laws. He defends governmental entities and officials in constitutional and civil rights litigation, including defense of claims brought under the First, Fourth, Fifth, and Fourteenth Amendments to the Constitution of the United States.

Mr. Miklave serves as lead negotiator and advises employers with respect to union-management labor negotiations and provides advice and counsel for labor and employment matters involving mergers, acquisitions, and reorganizations.

Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Miklave was a partner at Epstein Becker & Green, P.C., in its New York City and Stamford, Connecticut, offices. He also served as counsel to the National Labor Relations Board, in Washington, DC; as trial attorney to the NLRB's Regional Office in Brooklyn, New York; and as hearing officer in numerous union-management representation matters. Mr. Miklave also taught courses on civil rights and constitutional law as an adjunct faculty member at the American University in Washington, DC.

Mr. Miklave regularly lectures nationally and internationally on a variety of employment, labor, and civil rights-related topics. For almost 10 years, he hosted an online forum devoted to labor and employment issues. Mr. Miklave is on the adjunct faculty of, an online provider of CLE programs.

Mr. Miklave also served as an elected representative on the Norwalk (Connecticut) City Council (2001 to 2007, and 2011 to 2013), where he served as chair of the Planning Committee (2001 to 2007, and 2011 to 2012) and as council president (2002 to 2003).


  • University of Notre Dame Law School 
  • J.D. with honors 
  • American University 
  • B.S. with distinction
  • State of Connecticut
  • State of Michigan
  • State of New York
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, 2nd Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, District of Connecticut
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Michigan


Zafer A.

very easy to understand.

Manuel B.

Great overview on three different statutes.

Daniel W.

Highly Knowledgeable; hope he gives more CLE on this subject

Tracey K.

Good overview of the law by an experienced practitioner.

Melvyn L.

Excellent overview of employment discrimination law.

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$ 59 Civil Rights In Stock


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