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California Wrongful Termination

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California wrongful termination means that an employee in California has been fired or laid off for reasons that violate the employee's legal rights. If wrongful termination law has been violated in the firing or laying off of an employee, that employee may be able to file a wrongful termination lawsuit against his or her employer.

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California Wrongful Termination and Employment At-Will


wrongfulterminationlaw4.jpg" California, like many other states, is an at-will state, meaning employers can discipline or fire employees at will (that is, without either needing or providing a reason to the employee). That said, there are situations in which the firing of an employee could be considered wrongful termination. This includes situations in which the employer is discriminating against the employee on the basis of age, race, sex, sexual orientation, disability, marital status, religion, national origin or gender identity. For example a woman cannot be fired simply because she is a woman.

Employees may also have an implied contract with their employer that could prevent the employer from firing the employee without just cause. These implied contracts may be informal and it is up to the court to determine if such a condition existed. The court bases this decision on a variety of factors including promises of job security, the employer's employee handbook or policies, and job performance evaluations.

Finally, employees cannot be fired when the termination is based on a reason that is contrary to public policy. Firing an employee for refusing to do something illegal, for example, could be considered wrongful termination. Employers are also prohibited from firing, disciplining or retaliating against any employee who files a complaint with the government about illegal activities on the employer's part.

California Employment Law

California labor laws that protect employees are covered in the California Fair Employment And Housing Act. The Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) is the state organization charged with investigating allegations of discrimination on the job. In many cases, employees must file a complaint either with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing or with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC, the federal organization responsible for investigating employment complaints) before filing a lawsuit.

There may also be local laws that prevent employers from firing or disciplining employees for a number of reasons.

California Employee Law and Independent Contractors

wrongfulterminationlaw.jpg In California, job protections do not apply to independent contractors; however, it is not enough that an employer classify someone as an independent contractor. The determination of whether someone is an independent contractor is based on how the worker is treated. This includes examining whether the worker has control over his own work methods and is paid by the job. Any worker who is called an independent contractor but is treated as an employee is likely protected by California employment law.



California Wrongful Termination Legal Help

If you or a loved one has suffered from Wrongful Termination in California, please click the link below and your complaint will be sent to a California Employment lawyer who may evaluate your claim at no cost or obligation.

Last updated on May-8-15

CALIFORNIA WRONGFUL TERMINATION LEGAL ARTICLES AND INTERVIEWS

Cupcakes with Termination Tasteless
Cupcakes with Termination Tasteless San Francisco, CA: First there was the Twinkie defense and now cupcakes for the wrongfully terminated - only in San Francisco! While Maryann’s employer thought the gesture would soften the blow, she believes there is no room for cupcakes in the California labor laws [READ MORE]

When Does Drug Testing Violate the California Labor Law?
When Does Drug Testing Violate the California Labor Law? Torrance, CA: Colin was given a drug test prior to being hired as a computer technician. Generally, California labor law allows employers to test applicants for drugs. But Colin was terminated two months after he was hired, with the excuse that he tested positive for pot [READ MORE]

One Strike You’re Out: Wrongful Termination
One Strike You’re Out: Wrongful Termination Rialto, CA: Juan believes he was wrongfully terminated: he didn’t show up for work one day because he was in jail - a situation obviously out of his control. His employer fired Juan because he was “unreliable” but he had never even been late for work. Is that fair [READ MORE]



READER COMMENTS

Posted by
California
on
I was terminated from my job. I feel it's due to me becoming partially disabled, although they gave other reasons when I asked for an explanation for the termination.

Posted by
California
on
I believe I was wrongfully terminated based on "judgment" not facts regarding my performance. I was not given any severance package either. I am a sole single parent of a baby as well and feel like I was discriminated against.

Posted by
California
on
I was verbally abused by another employee for over a year and a half. I filed a hostile work complaint against her with HR with multiple witnesses within and outside of the company. I was then laid off shortly afterward. The reason given was the reducing the workforce.

Posted by
California
on
After 11/2 years of harassment over clock-in, clock-out procedures with my leadsman, I complained to my supervisor. My complaint was that my leadman had me text him when arriving and leaving, then later a face-to-face when arriving and leaving, and then email from my desk computer. Time clock proceedure was dictated to me by my supervisor, the lead decided to have me text and e-mail him on his own. No other employee had to do this. When the supervisor refused to intervene, I went to HR. Two weeks later I was the only employee "laid off."

Posted by
Anonymous
on
I was working for a company since September 2014, and everything was going well or so I thought, and on New Years Eve I was called into some persons office and let go. No reason, nothing. Being that it was around the holidays my manager, supervisor and head of human resources were out. Well after being there for almost 4 months, everything I ever heard were compliments on my work. Never once was I given any verbal or written warnings. I am pregnant and I had let my manager know, now I'm thinking that is the reason they let me go. Is there anything I can do?

Posted by
California
on
I was disciplined, demoted and finally fired after complaining to human resources about my bosses' discriminatory actions and sexual harassment. I was told when I was fired that “it’s been 2 years, it’s termination. Ha ha.”

Posted by
California
on
I went above my immediate Supervisor's head and spoke to her direct Supervisor. I have many e-mails to document that I had questions and concerns, and only went above her head when nothing was being addressed. This was last Wednesday and I was fired today.

Posted by
California
on
Fired on December 5, 2014 when I showed up for driving duty. Had no previous notice of job performance issues. I am an excellent driver as my California Department of Motor Vehicles license indicates and was simply told "you are not a good driver" on the day of my dismissal.

Posted by
California
on
I was terminated 2 weeks after returning to work from maternity leave. They said I was violating policy by becoming an online Beachbody Coach while on leave. However, I was never reminded or adequately warned about this. I feel like I was being retaliated against for taking a long leave. And yes, I'm an African American. Why is it ok for so many other woman to be "beachbody coaches" while being employed by 24 Hour Fitness? That's not fair. It's discrimination!

Posted by
California
on
My girlfriend was asked to come in to work on her day off. She rides her bike to work. On her way to work she was hit by a car and suffered a broken ankle. Being that her bike is her only way of transportation she can not go to work. She received a note recommending light or MOD duty; however, she had no way to get to work with a broken ankle and the employer did not have adequate means to accommodate her condition, allowing her to work until she healed. She received a call today stating she was being fired from her job. She told me she will quit instead. What should I do? Does she have a case?

Posted by
California
on
I was involved in a accident at work. I am a heavy equipment operator and the machine rolled over. I went to the urgent care and was instructed to not come back to work until the following week. I returned to the job and was fired on the spot! I have never been given any write-ups or anything. This was my first and only incident. I worked for TNT for just under a year.

Posted by
California
on
In January I found out I was pregnant and immediately informed my employer, because we had a personal trainer who came to the office. Prior to informing my employer, he often told me what a valuable employee I was, and we really didn't have any problems. After I told him I was pregnant, his attitude toward me changed significantly. The majority of my job responsibilities were taken away, and my income became significantly reduced. I lost all my benefits except for being allowed to work from home. I went from being a salaried employee to being an hourly employee with no notice, or room to dispute, and ultimately, I was fired. My employer says I was fired for being a poor employee, but I feel the trend is pretty clear that after revealing I was pregnant, my employer began to discriminate against me.

Posted by
California
on
Fired for “excessive talking.” Former employee is an at will employer and has fired multiple employees in the recent months for un-justified reasons. I feel employer uses any false excuses to fire employees.

Posted by
California
on
I was told I should take FMLA to help deal with my wife's sickness. After going through with the doctor’s appointment, I went in, and instead, they terminated me for being late on credit card reconciliation forms. I have been there 6 years, worked hundreds of hours of overtime, never been written up at all. They had no intention of helping me get on FMLA, they even let me spend money on a doctor’s visit. As soon as I walked in to give them the papers for leave, they said, “we’re letting you go for insubordination.” I’ve never gotten in trouble once whilie at Imtech. They knew the heavy stress of dealing with my wife’s illness. I feel the manager wanted to cut someone because business is slow, and I was a sitting duck.

Posted by
California
on
Was sick and called in on June 30. Provided my employer my doctor's note taking me off until July 2. My employer e-mailed me on July 3 informing me that I was terminated because I wasn't able to work the prior 3 days.
I wasn't on a performance plan, I was excelling in my position.

Posted by
California
on
On June 7th, a co-worker made a claim that they observed me taking pictures of myself at a work location. I explained to my manager that I did not take any pictures of myself at my location and tried to show proof that I had not taken a picture of myself in costume. I was put on investigatory suspension and kept out of work for 2 weeks. On June 18th, I was called by a manager to come and discuss my suspension; when I got there, I was told I was being terminated for violation of company policy and given a check for $18.45 and never shown proof from the managers that I took pictures of myself at my work location.

Posted by
California
on
I filed a statement against a facility manager for not allowing me to transfer. Shortly after attempting to transfer, I was out several weeks on disability. Within 2 weeks of returning to work, I was told I was being terminated because I had lied on my application over 2 years earlier. I submitted all requested information and received an email stating all was clear and I was confirmed for employment from the H.R. Manager at the time. I was an outstanding employee, received good marks and promotions and was coincidentally terminated just after I returned. They also denied my unemployment.

Posted by
California
on
I was accused of abandoning my job while on doctor-recommended leave. I was injured outside of work and needed surgery to repair the damage. My work only approved part of the time off recommended by my doctors. I won an appeal through my work and was paid for time after the alleged abandonment. I have filed a complaint with the EEOC and will be receiving a right to sue letter soon.

Posted by
California
on
I was diagnosed with skin cancer about a month ago. I explained the situation to my boss and told her I would need some time off for the surgery. I was told my recovery would be one to three weeks after the surgery (as a lymph node biopsy was also required). Now my boss is saying she doesn't need me any more, AND is implying that I lied about the severity of my procedure (to which I offered to get my surgeon to give her a detailed explanation).

Basically, my boss is saying I am not needed because I had to take time off for cancer surgery and recovery.

Posted by
California
on
Caller is a preschool teacher. There was a misunderstanding on who was taking a break. She has a parent who heard her say she was going to break; however, the other teacher did not hear and she went on break as well at the same time. She was put on suspension but she was not paid for that time. She was only paid for 2 hours for the last day. She was then terminated.

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