Orange County Employment Lawyer

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Orange County Employment Law Attorney

If you’re searching for an Orange County employment lawyer, Hennig Kramer LLP, can help you by offering comprehensive legal advice, support, and representation. We are a dedicated employment law firm that has helped many clients file claims against their employers. We work to fight against discrimination, harassment, and retaliation in the workplace, and we seek justice in and around Orange County, California.

Our lawyers have aided workers with several types of employment issues, such as the following:

  • Discrimination based on a disability
  • Gender discrimination
  • Age harassment and discrimination (over 40)
  • Sexual harassment
  • Discrimination and harassment based on sexual orientation
  • Whistleblower retaliation
  • Discrimination or harassment due to pregnancy
  • Race, ethnicity, and national origin discrimination
  • Discrimination and harassment based on faith or religious practices

Orange County Employment Lawyer

Why Choose Hennig Kramer LLP?

We work with our clients every step of the way, ensuring they understand their rights and responsibilities throughout the case. You can anticipate that your questions and concerns will be addressed in a timely and thorough manner. We also offer clear and detailed communication so that you are involved in each step of the process. From the first correspondence until the end of your case, we tirelessly pursue justice on your behalf.

At Hennig Kramer LLP, our employment lawyers have a long history of success. In one case, we represented a client who worked in a group environment and suffered near-daily harassment based on his sexual orientation. Unfortunately, this escalated to a severely inappropriate level that required legal action. Our attorneys fought on our client’s behalf to secure a $1.5 million settlement.

Another example of our firm’s positive impact on workers is a case in which we represented over a dozen employees. They were discriminated against due to the use of their language of origin in the workplace (an “English only” workplace), along with other national origin discrimination incidents. Our law firm worked to secure a $1.1 million settlement on their behalf.

In the workplace, you deserve fair treatment, and you should not be discriminated against or harassed due to a protected characteristic. If you are experiencing unlawful treatment, you do not have to face this alone. Stand up for your rights by speaking with a qualified Orange County employment lawyer who can explain your options.

What Rights Do Workers Have in California?

In California, workers have a broad range of protections, and many laws and regulations govern the relationship between employers and employees. As an employee, it is important to be aware of your rights and protections under the law so that you can identify illegal practices in the workplace. The key areas of employment law include the following:

  • Wage and Hour Regulations: There are regulations that ensure employees are paid at least the state-mandated minimum wage, as well as overtime wages when they have worked over eight hours in a day or 40 hours in a week. The overtime rate is 1.5 times their normal pay. Those who work over 12 hours in one day must receive twice their normal pay rate for those hours.The law also regulates meal and rest breaks. For instance, employees cannot work for more than five hours in one day without a 30-minute long meal break, with some exceptions. Laws fight wage theft and ensure that employees are paid for all hours worked.
  • Employee Discrimination and Harassment: According to the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, age (over 40), national origin, mental and physical disabilities, medical conditions, and other protected characteristics is illegal. Workplace harassment based on protected characteristics and retaliation against protected activities are also prohibited.
  • Worker Classification: There are rules that determine the proper classification of workers as either employees or independent contractors. Independent contractors are not entitled to the same protections as employees. The general rule is that workers who perform the “core work” of the business, who are provided tools to work, and are given a set schedule are likely to be employees.
  • Family, Medical, and Paid Sick Leave: The California Family Rights Act (CFRA) allows employees to take as much as 12 weeks of unpaid job-protected leave for reasons pertaining to family and medical issues.This leave is unpaid, but it is job-protected. The federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is a law that provides up to 12 weeks of unpaid job-protected leave in a one-year period for qualifying reasons. There are also regulations on the accrual and usage of paid sick leave.
  • Workplace Safety: There are numerous health and safety standards that must be upheld to ensure a safe workplace. The California Occupational Safety and Health Act (Cal/OSHA) of 1973 was passed to ensure Californians’ safety at work. Employees are protected against retaliation for raising workplace safety concerns.
  • At-Will Employment: In California, employment agreements are at-will, allowing either party to end an employment relationship at any time, with or without cause. However, employees cannot be fired because of their protected characteristics or as retaliation for engaging in protected activities. In these cases, employees may have grounds for a wrongful termination suit.
  • Privacy Rights: There are strict employee privacy rights that dictate how employers should conduct background checks and how to use the information they obtain. There are also rules for employee monitoring and the protection of personal information.

How to Respond After Discovering Your Employer Is in Violation of Employment Law

If you discover that your employer has violated employment law in California, it is important to take the appropriate steps to address the situation. Although there are many ways to react, all dependent on the unique circumstances, below are some suggested steps to take:

  • Know Your Rights: It is vital that you understand your rights as an employee in California and know how to identify a violation.
  • Document the Violation: It is important to have evidence of the violation if possible. This can take the form of emails, pay stubs, timesheets, employment contracts, and any relevant correspondence with your employer.
  • Review Company Policies: Understand and review your employee handbook and related company policies to understand your rights and the proper procedures for reporting violations within your organization.
  • Report Internally: It is important to first report the violation to your employer according to your company’s procedures. If it is appropriate and you feel safe doing so, report the issue to your supervisor unless, of course, they are involved in the violation.
  • Get Legal Help: Contact an employment law attorney to get specific advice pertaining to your case in Orange County. An attorney can assist you in understanding your rights and identifying the optimal course of action.
  • File a Complaint With State and/or Federal Agencies: You can file official complaints at both the state and federal levels. You could submit a complaint to the California Civil Rights Department (CRD) and the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

How Can an Employment Lawyer Help Me?

An employment lawyer can provide invaluable and necessary assistance with various aspects of employment-related issues. Below are specific ways an employment lawyer can help:

  • Overview of Your Rights: An attorney will clarify your rights under both federal and state employment laws, including those such as wage and hour protections, discrimination, harassment, and wrongful termination. Your attorney can review and explain the terms of employment contracts, non-compete agreements, severance agreements, and more. They can ensure that you understand your rights as an employee.
  • Case Evaluation and Assessment: Your attorney will provide an assessment of your case, evaluate its strengths and weaknesses, and advise you on the best course of action while considering all relevant factors. They can work to develop an effective legal strategy that is tailored to your specific circumstances and goals.
  • Gathering of Evidence: Attorneys may carry out a thorough investigation process in which they will assist in collecting and organizing documentation and evidence to support their client’s claims.
  • Filing Official Complaints and Claims: Your attorney can assist you in filing complaints with relevant government agencies like the California Civil Rights Department (CRD) and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). If it is necessary, your attorney can assist in preparing and filing a lawsuit in civil court.
  • Representation and Protection Against Retaliation: An employment law attorney may represent you in negotiations with your employer or in court. They can help you file claims if you face retaliation for carrying out protected activities, like reporting unlawful discrimination based on protected characteristics.
  • Dispute Resolution: Attorneys may assist in resolving disputes through alternative resolution methods like mediation and arbitration, which are often required by employment contracts. They can negotiate a settlement or severance agreements to ensure they are fair and in your interests.

Ultimately, an Orange County employment lawyer can help ensure your case is handled effectively and that you receive the justice you deserve. Your employment lawyer will ensure you understand your rights, protect those rights, negotiate settlements, and represent you in various legal settings as necessary. They can also assist in gathering evidence and filing and pursuing claims. Seek legal advice as soon as you can to give yourself a full and fair opportunity at a successful case.


Q: Are Employees Entitled to Pregnancy Disability Leave in California?

A: Yes, employees are entitled to pregnancy disability leave in California. They can receive up to four months of leave for one pregnancy. Any time taken off in connection with the pregnancy, including before and after childbirth, counts toward the four-month total.

Employees should notify their employers of their intention to take leave 30 days beforehand. However, this is not always possible, such as when a medical emergency occurs. In this case, the employee should give notice as soon as they can.

Q: What Are Protected Characteristics in California?

A: In California, there are many protected characteristics as described in the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA). These include religion, creed, age (for those over 40), race, color, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, marital status, sex, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, and more. Workplaces must be free from discrimination or harassment based on these protected classes. If this is occurring in your workplace, report it to management or Human Resources immediately.

Q: What Are My Employee Rights in California?

A: Your employee rights in California are numerous and dictate your working. You are entitled to minimum wages, overtime pay, meal rest breaks during shifts of a certain length, safe working environments, protection against harassment and discrimination based on protected characteristics, five days or 40 hours of paid sick leave per year, medical and family leave, and protection from retaliation against protected activities.

Speak with an employment lawyer to learn more.

Q: What Are Common California Labor Law Violations?

A: Common California labor law violations include the failure to pay employees the state-mandated minimum wage and not paying time-and-a-half for overtime hours. Another common violation includes employers not providing their workers with the meal and rest breaks that are required, which can vary depending on the number of hours worked.

Employers also violate labor regulations when they misclassify employees as independent contractors to withhold provisions of certain benefits and protections. These are just a few frequent violations, as many more occur each year in California.

Q: When Must Employees Be Paid Overtime in California?

A: In California, employees must be paid overtime for working beyond eight hours in one day or 40 hours in one week. For these hours, they should be paid 1.5 times their regular rate of pay. They must also be paid 1.5 times their normal pay for the first eight hours they work on the seventh consecutive day of the workweek. If they work beyond 12 hours in one day or over eight hours on the seventh consecutive day of the workweek, they should be paid double their normal rate.

Contact a Qualified Orange County Employment Lawyer to Receive the Help You Deserve

If you believe that your rights have been violated at work, do not wait to seek the justice and compensation you deserve. Contact Hennig Kramer LLP, to set up a consultation with a member of our experienced legal team.

We are dedicated to fighting for your rights and can provide the guidance and representation you need to navigate your legal options. Whether you’re dealing with wage and hour disputes, discrimination, harassment, wrongful termination, or any other workplace issue, our team is here to help.


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