Labor laws are in place to not only protect the employee but also the employer (though sometimes that doesn’t seem to be the case). The law clearly states what your rights and obligations are. Therefore, it protects you by being there for you. However, it is incumbent that you know it. The main laws that you need to be aware of relating to discrimination, overtime, minimum wage, family leave, military leave, safety, and immigration. There are many sources that will give you a quick glimpse of the most common laws you need  to follow. Primarily, those sources are the EEOC, the Department of Labor, and OSHA.
When I left the corporate world, I had been a manager for almost as many years as some of my employees had been alive. During those many years, it was not unusual to have run into a few disgruntled employees who  tried to use the law as retribution for a perceived wrong  inflicted upon them. And yes, I ran into a few tricky situations. Most of the time it had to do with discrimination or an adversarial environment in the workplace. I know from experience that these EEOC or DOL cases can be won if you have clear documentation on how you handled complaints from the accusing party. When it happened, it was maddening the amount of time and resources needed to defend the case. That’s why your documentation is so important. The better the documentation, the faster you can bring the matter to a close.