Getting to Know California Employment Laws California workers who are classified as “at will” workers may find themselves at risk of being terminated from their workplace for any reason even if it is an unfair one or for no reason at all. Typically, an employee that does not have an employment contract has been working for an organization for less than five years might be considered an “at will” employee under the California employment laws. To successfully file a wrongful termination claim, the termination will need to have offended some fundamental right. Simply put, this means that the state regulation federal statute or constitutional provision should have already been violated by the termination. For instance, when the employer orders an employee to do something which is against the law, regulation, ordinance or statute, the company cannot lawfully fire that worker for refusing to do such a thing. More to this, one may pursue this in cases such as when an employee complains about what they believe is a violation of the law such as failure to pay overtime, late payment of wages or workplace safety issues and is fired as a result. Another violation that would lead to a wrongful termination claim comes up when the employee’s true reason for letting go of the worker is based on the employee’s gender, age, disability, religion or national origin. Although such discriminations are under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act, they can also result in a common law claim as they can be in breach of the public policy. Similarly, this also is true for termination made in retaliation for an employee’s opposition to or complaints about harassment or discrimination on any one of the protected classifications listed above. Consider the example when an employee complain about sexual harassment and is criticized at work, or is written up, disciplined or fired for it. In this instance, they would possess a claim for retaliation under the Fair Employment and Housing Act and also under common law.
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Other terminations might be illegal as they’ve been prohibited under different laws. Some of these are the firing of employees because of taking medical, or maternity leave or sexual orientation. Employees who have to take leave due to a serious medical condition or must care for a child or parent that has such a condition, are protected under the law. The protection under the law applies if one has worked for more than 1250 hours throughout the previous year or the organization has more than 50 workers within a seventy-five-mile radius or if they have worked for the company for more than a year. State and Federal laws are enacted to protect workers against wrongful termination. Normally, these laws prohibit termination based on race, age, gender, nationality, religion and disability.Short Course on Resources – Covering The Basics