Bored at work? You could always try suing your employer.
That’s what Frédéric Desnard, a 44-year-old Parisian worker, has done.
He filed a lawsuit against Interparfums, a perfume and cosmetics company, demanding more than $400,000 in compensation for being “bored out” of his $90,000 a year job, according the Washington Post, citing French media.
Interparfums did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment.
Desnard alleges that his employer demoted him from a high-profile position in the company in an effort to convince him to voluntarily quit his job. He was later fired after a car crash caused him to go on prolonged sick leave.
Desnard did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment.
French labor laws are notoriously protective of employees. The 3,400-page labor code makes it difficult for employers to fire workers. When the French government sought to loosen the code in March, thousands of workers went on strike.
Of course, Desnard isn’t the only employee dissatisfied with his occupation. Some 68 percent of Americans reported a lack of engagement with their job in 2015, according to a Gallup poll.
However, before you decide to take your boss to court, you may want to read up on U.S. labor laws, which are quite different from French regulations.
“Generally speaking, in Europe, it’s harder to discharge employees than it is in the United States,” Larry Cary, founding partner at Cary Kane, a law firm in New York City, told CNBC.
In America, many workers are employees at-will, meaning that the employee can be dismissed by an employer or leave the company without warning. In fact, only about 13 percent of U.S. workers have collective bargaining agreements, which stipulate that employers need just cause in order to terminate employment, Cary said.
“You don’t have a right to have an interesting job,” Robert Ottinger, a New York City employment lawyer, told CNBC. “So, in America, it would be laughed out of the courtroom.”
Ottinger notes that if Desnard worked in the United States and had a specific contract that stipulated his employment role would not change or he could prove that his demotion was caused by discrimination, then, perhaps, he would have a case in an American court.
“I think [employees] are often surprised to find out that they have fewer rights than they think they do,” Cary said. “People walk around in America thinking that employers can’t do certain things because there is a law prohibiting it. They are frequently surprised that, in fact, employers can do the kinds of terrible things that they do.”