Every employee has a variety of rights that are granted to them through state and federal laws. Within these rights are protections from unfair behavior in the workplace, such as wrongful termination. California is an “at-will” employment state, meaning that employees can accept and leave jobs when they wish, and employers can accept and terminate employees when they wish. However, there are some cases where an employer fires an employee under illegal circumstances. If you believe that you have been wrongfully terminated in Newport Beach, California, our team at California Employment Counsel, APC, is ready to help.
California Employment Counsel, APC: Employment Law Attorneys
At California Employment Counsel, APC, we are committed to protecting the rights of California workers. With decades of experience shared between our attorneys, we understand just how complex employment law issues like wrongful termination can be. That is why we offer expert legal representation for all California employees who may be victims of unfair treatment in the workplace. If you were fired for reasons that you believe were unlawful, do not wait to seek legal representation. At California Employment Counsel, APC, we will always put your best interests first and fight to hold your employer accountable.
What Is Wrongful Termination?
Because California is an “at-will” state, an employer does not need to justify their reasoning for firing an employee, and employees can leave their job at any time. However, if an employer fires an employee based on a legally protected characteristic, it is considered wrongful termination. Both state and federal laws provide every California employee with rights and protections in the workplace. One of those rights is protection from discrimination or wrongful termination based on:
Ancestry or nation of origin
Physical or mental disability
It is also considered wrongful termination when:
An employee is fired because they took time off or requested time off through FMLA or CFRA.
An employee is fired as a form of retaliation (for example, because they filed a harassment claim against their employer).
An employee is fired outside of a contract or in an unlawful way.
An employee is fired because they are a “whistleblower” or refuse to work in unsafe conditions.
Different Types of Wrongful Termination Cases in California
Wrongful termination can come in multiple forms, which is why it is important that every employee is aware of the rights they have in the workplace.
Discrimination or Harassment
Discrimination and harassment cases are some of the most common employment law cases in California. If an employer bases their decision to fire an employee on a protected characteristic (i.e., race, gender, age, religion, etc.), it is considered a form of discrimination and therefore is classified as wrongful termination. It is also illegal for an employer to fire an employee as a form of harassment or because the employee reported harassment.
Breach of Contract
A “breach of contract” simply means that the terms of a set contract were broken by one of the parties involved. If an employer breaks the terms of a contract or if they fire an employee, which then breaks the terms of the contract they had together, they may be violating employment law.
It is against the law for an employer to retaliate against their employee, which includes firing them for an unlawful reason. For example, an employer cannot terminate an employee if they:
Get hurt on the job.
Refuse to partake in illegal activity.
Report health and safety violations.
The California Labor Code grants every employee the right to report their employer if they believe suspicious, harmful, or unlawful behavior is occurring. The term “whistleblower” is used to describe an employee who decides to report their employer for unlawful behavior such as discrimination, harassment, unsafe work conditions, and more. If an employee decides to report their employer, they are also protected by state law and cannot be retaliated against or fired because of their actions. If you are fired because you reported your employer for a violation, then you may have a wrongful termination case in California.
The Family and Medical Leave Act, more commonly known as the FMLA, is a federal law that grants workers the right to request time off for certain circumstances. It is against the law for an employer to deny an eligible employee their right to unpaid, job-protected leave through the FMLA or to retaliate against them for taking it. An employee is eligible for FMLA leave under several circumstances:
The employee has a serious health condition.
Their spouse, child, or parent has a serious health condition.
The birth of a child.
A qualifying military circumstance.
How Wrongful Termination Attorneys Can Help
In many employment law cases, especially wrongful termination cases, there are serious matters involved. That is why it is always in your best interest to work with an attorney who is experienced in the field, like one of our team members at California Employment, APC. Our lawyers can not only help you navigate through the legal proceedings of your case, but we can also help you better understand your rights as an employee. We always prioritize our clients’ needs and will work to create a compelling case for your unique situation. Our lawyers can also use their negotiation skills to represent you to the best of their ability and fight for the best possible outcome. Our team is committed to holding employers accountable and will work to protect your rights.
Newport Beach Wrongful Termination Lawyers
At California Employment Counsel, APC, we hold that every employee has the right to feel comfortable where they work. That is why we are dedicated to providing thorough, compassionate representation for each client that comes through our doors. If you believe you were fired for the wrong reasons in Newport Beach, do not hesitate to see how our team may be able to help you. For more information about our services, contact us today.
Why Speak Up In California
You should never be afraid to assert your
rights as an employee