Were You Wrongfully Terminated? Know Your Rights As An Employee In California

Losing your job can be traumatic and stressful. You were depending on your income to pay the bills and take care of your family. Now that your income has disappeared, you may feel lost and unsure where to turn. 

We understand – and we want to help.

As an employee in the state of California, you have many legal rights and protections available to you. Unfortunately, in many cases, employers violate these rights – often including wrongful terminating you. 

Our experienced employment lawyers can help you determine whether your rights were violated through unlawful termination, and we can help you fight for compensation when necessary.

Please contact us today to schedule a free, confidential consultation. 

Understand Your Rights in the State of California

California is an “at-will” employment state. This means that employers can terminate employees for any reason, even if it seems unfair – unless the reason is unlawful

Below are several examples of unlawful termination. It is not legal for your employer to fire you for any of the following reasons:

  • Your employer cannot fire you if doing so breaches a written or oral contract they made with you.
  • Your employer cannot fire you based on age, race, sex/gender/gender identity, disability, medical condition, pregnancy, genetic information, national origin, sexual orientation, religion, marital status, military or veteran status.
  • Your employer cannot fire you for taking time off for pregnancy, a medical or mental condition, injury, or jury duty.
  • Your employer cannot fire you for complaining about sexual harassment or other harassment.
  • Your employer cannot fire you for engaging in whistleblower activities, such as complaining about a company’s unlawful activities or unsafe workplace.
  • Your employer cannot fire you for demanding meal and rest breaks, correct pay, or overtime pay. 
  • Your employer cannot fire you for filing a worker’s compensation claim or reporting a work injury. 
  • Your employer cannot fire you for engaging in political activities. 
  • Your employer cannot fire you joining a lawsuit against the employer.

In many cases, employers will come up with a “fake” reason to fire you to cover for their real, unlawful reason. For example, an employer may come up with an excuse to fire you because he/she doesn’t want to accommodate your medical condition. If you feel that your employer is making up a false excuse to fire you, and the real reason is unlawful, an experienced employment attorney can help you make sense of your options. 

What Type of Compensation Am I Entitled to if I Was Wrongfully Terminated?

If you were wrongfully terminated, you may be able to recover some or all of the following damages:

  • Lost wages, Earnings, or Benefits
  • Bonuses
  • Pensions
  • Reduced pay (after unlawful demotion) 
  • Lost pay (due to loss of promotion)
  • Emotional distress, Pain or suffering
  • Penalties
  • Punitive damages
  • Attorney’s fees
  • Interest
  • And in some cases, you may be able to be reinstated in your job.

If You Believe You Were Wrongfully Terminated, Here’s What to Do

If you were unlawfully fired, you may be entitled to compensation. Here are three critical “first steps” to defending your rights.

  • Document everything – keep copies of your employee handbook, your hiring documents, any documents related to termination, and all communications with employers, including screenshots of text messages.
  • Don’t retaliate – even though you’re angry, this will only make things worse. Remain civil. This can only help your case later on.
  • Contact an experienced employment attorney that focuses exclusively on employment law. Do this as soon as possible! 

We’ll Fight for Your Rights When You’ve Been Wrongfully Terminated

If you think that your employer may have fired you improperly, we are here to help.

SWemploymentlaw is focused solely on helping employees preserve their rights and helping them obtain compensation if those rights have been violated.

Fighting for your rights is all that we do! And we work exclusively on contingency basis, which means we only get paid if we win the case, and you don’t have to pay anything out of your own pocket. 

We have settled and tried cases winning millions of dollars in awards for clients whose employers have wrongfully terminated them, in addition to other ways the employer may have broken the law. Many of these types of situations are ideal for class action treatment. 


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