Workers should be properly ware of their rights and what they can be legally fired for. Many times, companies will take actions that are against the law, but they will count on the employees not knowing that. Termination is especially confusing at times, especially when considering that California is an at-will employment state. This means that employers do not need to give reason or notice to terminate a worker; they can do so whenever they wish for any purpose, provided the reason is not illegal. If it can be revealed that the termination was illegal, you can take legal action against the company. Our team of West Covina wrongful termination lawyers at the California Labor Law Employment Attorneys Group can handle your lawsuit for you so you can win fair compensation for the losses.
Wrongful Termination Details
According to numerous Federal Acts, it is illegal for employers to discriminate against or wrongfully terminate a worker. These Acts include:
- The Civil Rights Act of 1964, which restricts discrimination based on religion, sex, gender, race, and more
- The Pregnancy Discrimination Act, which is an amendment that concerns others who are pregnant and who take maternity leave
- The Age Discrimination in Employment Act, which is geared towards individuals over the age of 40 who face discrimination and unfair treatment in the workplace
- The Americans with Disabilities Act, which protects those who are disabled or injured from getting terminated for their conditions
You may be wrongfully terminated if you are fired for being a part of any of these protected classes. Some of the most common forms of wrongful termination include:
- Retaliation: If you have sent a complaint to HR concerning the way you were treated at your job, or if you made a complaint to your boss about how you were discriminated against, you could be on the chopping block or considered a liability. Employers may decide the best option is to simply get rid of the danger. You could be retaliated against if you took some action and then you were fired as a result of it.
- Discrimination: Discrimination can take on many forms. You could e discriminated against because your employer does not like that you were worshiping during work hours or because you took time to go on maternity leave. He could also be upset that you are a different race or that you have a different gender than he expects. It is not uncommon for employers to be discriminatory, and if you do not fit their molds, they could simply terminate you.
- Leave violation: You are entitled to taking certain kinds of leave during your employment. You can take maternity or paternity leave for up to 3 months at a time, or you can take medical leave to deal with injuries and disabilities. Sick time and vacation time that is awarded to you is protected, and your employer cannot terminate you for using the leave you are legally owed.
- Breach of public policy: A breach of public policy occurs when your employer deliberately fires you for taking time off to complete your civic duties. That is, if you were summoned to go to jury duty and you were selected to sit in, you cannot be fired for doing so. You also cannot be fired if you choose to take time off from work to go vote.
- Breach of contract: California is a state with at-will employment, which means that you can be fired for any reason at any point in time, and you can also leave your job at any point in time. Some employers and workers have contracts, though, that outline terms like grounds for termination or dismissal. If none of these terms are met, you cannot be fired. If your employer breaks that contract and does fire you, you could be fairly compensated, and he could pay a hefty fine.
- Whistle blowing: In some events, you may want to alert the authorities or news outlets to something going on at your workplace. You cannot be fired if you do so. Revealing the misdeeds of your employer is not considered grounds for termination.
As long as you have the awareness of what kind of reason your boss had to illegally fire you, you could be on your way to filing a claim. Too often, individuals o not know the reason behind why their boss fired them, and they naturally believe it was innocent. However, closer investigation can reveal discrimination or retaliation.
What To Do After A Wrongful Termination
In instances of discrimination, you should always prepare yourself in case you have to provide proof of the mistreatment. Your first step should always be to go to your Human Resources Department to file a complaint, but you may be disregarded. It is the job of HR to protect the company, and if you are seen as a potential threat to that, you may be let go. You should keep any exchanges, messages, emails, and more from HR.
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If you have a journal detailing what happened in the workplace, it will be beneficial. You might not keep a journal, but it is wise to do so to document anything. If you were already terminated, you should still write down any instances of mistreatment that you suffered.
Next, you should get statements and testimonies from coworkers, witnesses, and others who could attest to the wrongful termination. You may even be able to contact other workers who were fired or who suffered similar mistreatment. The more people you have backing you up, the more likely it is that your claim will succeed.
Be certain that you have any proof of going to jury duty or that you have your contract on hand. It will be the only piece of physical evidence in some cases to show your side of the case.
Lastly, it is important that you hire an attorney with experience in wrongful termination lawsuits. You might not have had any time spent in the legal field and you might not know how to move forward with a claim. Our lawyers know the ins and outs of the law and what is legal for your employer to do. We can handle your case while you focus on finding a new job. You should not have to worry about the legal process.
Restitution from a Wrongful Termination
If you were a victim of a wrongful termination and your employer illegally fired you, you could win a settlement for your damages. We will make sure that you are compensated for the following:
You should be fairly paid if you were illegally fired, and our lawyers will help.
Statute of Limitations for Wrongful Termination Lawsuits
The statute of limitations is in place to ensure that claims are filed within an acceptable amount of time and they do not drag on. You have 180 days to file a claim if you choose to go through the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the Federal agency. Because California has the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH), though, you have 300 days to sue. You will submit your evidence to the agency and they will investigate the claim. Once they have sent you a right-to-sue letter, you can take legal action up to 1 year after the date of the letter.
If you do not sue within that time frame, you will not be able to receive any compensation for the termination and your claim will be thrown out. You should be aware that some situations warrant a lengthened or shortened statute of limitations. For instance, claims made against government entities must be filed in 45 days, but claims filed against defendants who have left the state are postponed indefinitely and will only count down when he returns.
To determine the exact amount of time you have to sue for wrongful termination, contact our law firm today. We will make sure that your case is submitted on deadline.
How We Help
The California Labor Law Employment Attorneys Group has a team of lawyers with experience in employment law. We have been at the forefront of wrongful termination claims for years and we have recovered millions of dollars in restitution for our clients. We are highly rated and considered experts, and our aggressive lawyers are relentless in the pursuit of compensation.
We can talk about your case with you in a free legal consultation. The details of your case and your private information will be kept totally confidential, so you don’t have to worry about any sensitive info getting released. You can ask us any questions you want and we will tell you what we feel your claim is worth. If you want us to represent you, you will also receive our zero fee guarantee. This is a promise that you won’t have to pay a dime for our services. We will get paid if we win, but the money will come from the settlement we win for you. If we lose, we do not get any money at all.
For the best representation available in town, call our West Covina wrongful termination lawyers at the California Labor Law Employment Attorneys Group.