In California, employment is at-will. This means that you can be fired at any point by your employer, for any reason at all. This can be as simple as he does not think you have the potential to grow at the company. You simply cannot be fired in retaliation for actions you took or due to discrimination for one of your character traits. On the flip side, you can leave your job at any point for any reason, so long as you are not violating a contract. It is important that you identify the cause of your termination; if you were in a car accident and ended up getting fired for it, you will need to sufficiently examine the circumstance and the scenario to come up with a solution. You may have been wrongfully terminated, which could lead to a lawsuit. Our law firm, the California Labor Law Employment Attorneys Group, promises to do everything to win you the damages you deserve if you were wrongfully terminated after an auto accident.
Car Accidents and Careers
Most car accidents are simple fender benders with no injuries. However, some can be quite serious and leave you with lingering damages that do not go away. You may suffer injuries to your neck and spine, legs, hands, and more that can prevent you from doing the duties you need. Your career could stall or you could be unable to move forward. For example, if you are a construction worker, you will need to be able to use your hands to carry equipment and materials, as well as assemble it. Damages to your hands can prevent you from safely doing any of it
There is also the issue of travel. If you can only make it to work via your vehicle and your vehicle gets totaled or cannot be driven, you may not be able to go to work, especially if you are not financially stable enough to rent a car for a prolonged period of time.
Both of these factors can contribute to negative consequences from a car accident. If you are unable to complete your duties or go to work, your employer may simply wish to terminate you and find a worker who can do both.
Legality of Getting Terminated after an Auto Accident
If you were in a car accident and you were unable to go to work, there are no specific protections in and of themselves that allow you to keep your job. If you took your sick days and vacation days but ran out, you could feasibly be terminated. However, you should look into the Federal Family Medical Leave Act, which can allow you to keep your job during leave.
The FMLA allows injured individuals to take 12 weeks of unpaid leave from their jobs, and the jobs will still be available to them upon returning to the company. The company does not have to pay any wages during this time and is perfectly capable of hiring other individuals, but the job must be available for the injured worker when he returns. If the job is not available, a substantially similar position must be available or created.
Workers who exceed the 12 weeks of leave, even by a single day, can be legally terminated. It is illegal, however, for a worker to be fired in the middle of the period. You should always make sure that you communicate with your employer and say that you are taking your leave and exercising your right to under the FMLA.
The FMLA applies to companies that have at least 50 employees who are located within 75 miles of one another. Employees are eligible to take leave under the Act if they have been employed by the company for at least one year and have worked at least 1,250 hours in the previous year. If you work for a smaller company that has more specialists and experts, you may not be able to legally take the unpaid leave and have the job waiting for you when you return. It is recommended that you forge a good relationship with your boss in situations like this, as the time and money needed to train or acquire a new individual instead of waiting out the duration of your absence could be excessive.
How to Sue for Illegal Termination after a Car Accident
If you wish to file a lawsuit for illegal termination after a car accident, you will need to prove that your employer discriminated in some way or violated a contract. For example, if you took leave under the FMLA, your employer cannot terminate you. He also cannot terminate you based on a disability and must provide you with reasonable accommodations for any disabilities or issues.
You will need to provide some kind of doctor’s notes, medical treatment notes, test results from MRIs or X-rays, physical therapy sessions, or any other receipts showing that you were injured and received treatment or will be receiving treatment. Some injuries require ongoing treatment and numerous surgeries to repair.
You will need to show proof that you informed your employer of your right to take leave under the FMLA. Alternatively, if you have a contract that says that you cannot be fired due to injuries or that you will remain employed regardless of health status, you should provide copies of it. A breach of contract violation and a wrongful termination violation are two different issues and each has its own specifics to adhere to.
Evidence of the breach must also be provided. You could have emails, messages, texts, notes, and more that came from your employer in which he says that you will be terminated. it could, however, be a voice messages or a talk on the phone, which, in the case of the latter, is harder to provide proof of in a package.
If there were any coworkers who can attest to the wrongful termination, can claim that there was a plan to dispose of you despite your protections, or else knew that there would be illegal action taken against you, you should ask them for their statements and testimonies for your claim. This can prove invaluable. The issue is that there are many individuals who do not wish to provide these statements out of fear that they will face negative repercussions from the employer. If they speak out against the business or provide proof on your behalf, the company could fire them or punish them in some way, and they might not be able to afford not having a job.
Lastly, it is in your best interest to hire a skilled lawyer with experience in wrongful termination claims. If you do not have a lawyer on your side, you may not be able to get very far in the case. It is likely that your claim will be tossed out before it even gets a fair chance. You might not have any legal experience or knowledge, and if you were hurt, you certainly won’t have the physical energy needed to go through with the claim. A wrongful termination lawyer in Los Angeles will be able to take on your claim and ensure that you are given the max compensation available.
Deadline to File a Wrongful Termination Claim
Employment claims can be tricky to deal with. The statute of limitations is the time during which you can legally sue, and if that time runs out, you won’t receive any compensation. Employment claims filed through a Federal agency must be initiated within 180 days of the occurrence, while those issued through State agencies have 300 days before they expire. Suing for a violation of written contracts, however, has a statute of limitations of 3 years.
Too often, individuals who were mistreated at their jobs will miss out on the opportunity to sue. They will not know how much time is left on the claim. If you come to our firm, we promise to get your documents submitted on time.
Wrongful Termination Compensation
You could receive a fair amount of compensation if you were illegally terminated after sustaining injuries in a car accident. We will be sure to get you the lost income that you missed out on, reimbursement of benefits and insurance coverage, reinstatement to your old position, and more.
Be aware that you can also likely file a civil claim against the other driver if you were not at fault for the car accident.
Our Firm and You
The California Labor Law Employment Attorneys Group has an expert team of lawyers with decades of experience assisting employees who have been mistreated. We know the ins and outs of the law and will do everything in our power to secure you a fair settlement. We are aggressive and fully commit to our clients, as is evidenced by the hundreds of millions of dollars we have won over the years.
For a free legal consultation to discuss your claim, contact our firm today. We will walk you through the legal process and tell you what we feel your case is worth. If you have specific questions, we will answer them. We will also ensure that you pay us no fees whatsoever thanks to our zero fee guarantee. We will get paid only if we win, and the money will come from your employer covering the settlement. If we lose, we take no money at all, and you will not owe us a dime.
The California Labor Law Employment Attorneys Group can help you with your wrongful termination lawsuit if you were illegally fired after getting in a car accident.