Trusted Counsel for Union Laborer Terminations in the Bay Area
Experienced labor law attorneys help you understand when a termination in California is unlawful
Under California’s Labor Code, any employment relationship with no specified duration is presumed to be “at will.” This means that the employee may quit at any time and that the employer may terminate the employee at any time. However, there are some exceptions to the “at will” rule. If, before terminating an employee, you have concerns about complying with state or federal laws, seek help from a reliable attorney as soon as possible. Garcia & Gurney, A Law Corporation has developed a well-earned reputation for providing straightforward and reliable labor-law counsel to employers through the Pleasanton and Fremont areas.
Who is considered an “at-will” employee in California?
The following are “at-will” employees under the California Labor Code:
- Government and/or public employees
- Employees who are part of a union
- Employees who have a written, verbal or implied contract.
To reduce your exposure to wrongful termination liability, you should always use “at-will” language in any verbal or written contracts you make with your employees. In addition, if you suspect that an employee is going to take action because of an alleged wrongful termination, you should seek help from experienced employment attorneys.
Under the California employment policy, you may not terminate an at-will employee for any of the following reasons:
- Discrimination based on:
- Sexual orientation
- Gender or sex
- Political affiliation
- National origin
- Employer retaliation for whistleblowing for:
- Wage and hour violations
- Unsafe work conditions, and
- Rest-break and mealtime violations
- Filing for workers’ comp
- Refusing to work because dangerous conditions exist or refusing to enter an unsafe workplace
- Taking time off for family leave, medical leave, maternity leave, voting or jury duty
Damages for unlawful termination
In California, the Fair Employment and Housing Act allows wrongfully terminated employees to sue their employers. However, employees are barred from taking action against managers, supervisors, other employees or the board of directors. An employee who has been unlawfully terminated can collect damages for lost wages and for the value of lost benefits. If an employee is terminated because of retaliation or discrimination, he or she can recover compensation for emotional distress, attorney fees and possibly punitive damages.
Highly regarded labor law attorneys advise you
As an employer, you have a lot on your plate. You shouldn’t have to second-guess every decision you make, especially when it comes to terminations. Garcia & Gurney, A Law Corporation is here to provide you with the guidance you need to make labor law and employment decisions with confidence. To speak with an experienced attorney at our firm, contact us today by phone at 925-468-0400 or online.