Employees who complain about the illegal or unethical practices of their employers often face the same fate: they're fired. Many so-called whistle-blowers accept their fate and move on with their lives. Occasionally, however, a whistle-blower will fight back against employer retaliation with striking results. In a recent California case, a woman who had been discharged for calling attention to her employer's questionable sales practices obtained a verdict of $20 million in a wrongful termination lawsuit.
California employees are entitled to a number of important rights under both the federal Fair Labor Standards Act and the state's Labor Code. For example, one of the most important such rights is the right to receive paid overtime for work performed in excess of 40 hours per week. Not uncommonly, some employers will attempt to circumvent these laws and refuse to pay overtime to employees who are entitled to it or deny other rights under the law. If the employee should complain to either the employer or a government agency, the employer may retaliate by either discharging the employee or imposing onerous working conditions as a means of punishment. However, retaliation in such situations is prohibited by state and federal overtime laws, and in this post we will provide a summary of these violations and remedies available to employees.
Persons who question the actions of their superiors are often the target of retaliation by the employer, especially when the alleged misconduct involves mishandling funds. A recent ruling by a Federal judge demonstrates how the law - in this case, a federal statute - protects whistleblowers against such retaliation.
Safety on the job is important for every worker, but some fields are inherently prone to tragedy if safety is overlooked even for a moment. In the field of firefighting, it's extremely critical that all established safety procedures are adhered to, for the sake of both the firefighters and those they are trying to save. Unfortunately, sometimes doing the right thing, or reporting the wrong thing, can result in illegal employer retaliation.
We are often taught that doing the right thing will get us rewarded. Most of the time, this is true and those who exhibit honesty, integrity and care in their work will reap the rewards of such virtues over time. However, in some employment situations doing the right thing, or simply standing up for one's rights, can get a person in trouble. The topic of employer retaliation is one that a Los Angeles wrongful termination attorney can help with.
In the Los Angeles area, and across the country, the modern workplace tends to be extremely diverse. Most workers and employers understand the value of diversity and work to maintain a comfortable, productive and professional environment. However, there are times when certain incidents arise that can make all workers understandably apprehensive. The use of racial slurs can be deeply offensive to people from all backgrounds, and hearing them in the workplace can be jarring, at the very least, even as a bystander. Employers who fail to correct a hostile work environment can face litigation.
California's labor laws may be numerous and often complex, but they exist for critical reasons. One such reason is the protection of the countless workers who form the heart of the state's economy. A key protection offered by the state is protection against employer retaliation. A Los Angeles wrongful termination attorney can provide legal advice on this topic.
Employees in California, and the rest of the country, deserves to enjoy their job and feel like they are treated fairly by their employer and their co-workers. However, for many employees that are members of a protected class, or those that have reported compliance or safety concerns regarding their employer, this may not be the case. When an employee feels that he or she is being discriminated or retaliated against by his or her employer, it is important for he or she to understand and protect his or her rights to a safe and enjoyable work environment.
Employees in the public and private sectors are granted numerous rights regarding their employment status and treatment by their organization. Many of these protections are in place to ensure basic rights are provided to all employees, while others have the intent of protecting employees that bring awareness to violations and non-compliance of their organization, whether the company is doing so purposely or by mistake.
Employees in California are afforded various rights via federal and state law. Among them is protection from retaliation by their employer in the event that they file a complaint regarding the company or one of its other employees. Regardless of the cause of the complaint or whether it is filed internally or with an external agency, an employer cannot commit any adverse action against an employee in response.