Pasadena Employment Lawyer

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Pasadena Employment Law Attorney

If you are an employee in California, it is important that you are aware of the legal rights that you have under California state law. You have rights and protections that must be honored by your employer. A Pasadena employment lawyer can be a great resource to help understand your rights in the workplace. If you have questions about your rights in the workplace or want to pursue legal action against your employer, you should engage an attorney.

Pasadena Employment Lawyer

How an Employment Lawyer Can Help

An employment lawyer can help in many ways and provide a wide variety of services to employees. Some of the services that are common among employment lawyers include:

  • Explanation of rights. An employment lawyer can accurately explain the applicable laws and options available to employees trying to understand their rights under California state labor laws. A lawyer can help an employee weigh the pros and cons of possible litigation, negotiation, mediation, and other legal actions.
  • Negotiating a severance. An experienced employment lawyer can assist you in seeking a mutually-agreeable separation agreement, called a severance, with your employer. Severances are often agreed-upon to avoid litigation, and are typically used in cases where there are underlying legal issues, such as discrimination or retaliation, that the employer would prefer not to litigate.
  • Filing a complaint with governmental agencies. Most employment law-related complaints are submitted through a government agency such as the California Civil Rights Division (CRD) or the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE). An employment lawyer can assist an employee with filing their complaint with the appropriate agency and also help them understand the typical time frame in which the complaint must be filed and resolved.
  • Litigation. If a case goes to litigation, it’s important to have a legal professional on your side ready to support your interests. An employment lawyer can litigate and negotiate on your behalf to help you get the most desired outcome.

Workplace Discrimination

There are several laws in place that protect employees from discrimination in the workplace. Some of the most applicable workplace discrimination laws include:

  • The Equal Pay Act. This law ensures that employees are paid equally for equal work regardless of their gender, age, or sex. Employers are prohibited from displaying bias in employee pay, and this law helps to hold California employers accountable.
  • The California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA). The FEHA protects employees from misconduct related to a wide range of protected characteristics. The FEHA protects employees from discrimination or harassment on the basis of race, sex, age, ancestry/national origin, age (40 and over), disability or medical condition, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, and others. It also protects employees from retaliation for making protected reports of discrimination or harassment. It also provides for reasonable accommodations for employees with a disability that affects their ability to work.
  • Age Discrimination in Employment Act. There are child labor laws in place that protect young underage workers from being taken advantage of in the workplace. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act works in similar ways but protects employees and workers who are over the age of forty. This act ensures that employers do not show favoritism towards younger workers.Age discrimination could be the case if your employer seems to only promote younger employees or chooses to retain only their young employees instead of their more senior ones.
  • Title VII. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act prevents employers from being able to discriminate between job applicants or workers based on their race, religion, age, sex, etc.
  • Civil rights discrimination. The Civil Rights Acts serve to provide basic rights against discrimination. This also applies to employees in the workplace.
  • Disability discrimination. Employers are not legally permitted to discriminate against workers because of their disability. If the employee is able to perform the essential functions of their job, then that employee deserves the same fair treatment as the other employees. In cases where an employee with disabilities makes a reasonable accommodation request, then the employer is required to honor the employee’s request as long as it does not cause serious undue hardship to the employer.

Workplace Retaliation

What is workplace retaliation? Workplace retaliation can occur when an employer or manager inflicts some form of punishment or discipline towards an employee because that employee engaged in a legally protected act. A legally protected act can include actions like reporting fraudulent activity, taking leave because of a pregnancy, reporting a violation of the safety code, or reporting discrimination or harassment.

Retaliation can include firing, reducing hours, reducing salary, demoting, reassigning to a new job, or any other form of negative action that affects the terms and conditions of employment. If you have experienced any of these situations, you should immediately speak with an employment attorney to have your case reviewed by a legal professional. California employees are protected from workplace retaliation from their employer under California Labor Code 1102.5.

If you believe that you have experienced some form of retaliation from your employer, you may want to pursue legal action. You may file a notice with the California Labor and Workplace Development Agency using their online portal. Once you file the notice, the agency may investigate the complaint; if they do not choose to investigate your complaint, then you may file your own case with the California Superior Court. An attorney can help with this process.

Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment in California is defined as any form of behavior or action of a sexual nature that creates a hostile, offensive, or otherwise intimidating work environment. Any incident in the workplace, no matter how small, if sexual in nature, could be classified as sexual harassment. This can come in the form of derogatory comments, unwanted sexual proposals, discussing sexual acts, offering rewards or advancement in exchange for sexual favors, etc.

Sexual harassment most commonly reveals itself in the workplace in a quid pro quo form. Quid pro quo means “this for that.” Sadly, it is not uncommon for a boss or manager to condition your hiring, promotion, benefits, or continued employment on your willingness to adhere to sexual advances or sexual misconduct. Quid pro quo harassment can also be considered a threat, and it should be taken seriously in every circumstance.

When sexual harassment escalates in the workplace, it can turn into a hostile situation. If the harassment becomes severe and recurring, it can interfere with your work, creating a hostile and unproductive work environment. If you believe that you have experienced any form of sexual harassment in the workplace, you should engage the help of an employment attorney. An attorney can help analyze your situation and help you file a complaint with the necessary agency.

Wrongful Termination

Wrongful termination in the state of California can include any unlawful dismissal of an employee. If an employer decides to terminate an employee based on discriminatory factors, then that employee will likely be able to pursue legal action against their employer. For an employee to successfully pursue legal action against their employer, they must demonstrate that their employer terminated them in violation of California state labor laws.

Some common examples of wrongful termination include:

  • Retaliation for filing a complaint. As previously discussed, if an employer terminates an employee because they filed a complaint of unlawful activity or reported a workplace violation, that could be considered a wrongful termination.
  • Retaliation for taking leave. Employees are protected under California law and are allowed leave from work because of family or medical issues. If an employer terminates an employee in retaliation for taking their allowed time off, that could be grounds for a suit.
  • Termination due to pregnancy. Terminating an employee because of their pregnancy status is another form of wrongful termination. Employers are not permitted to terminate an employee because of their pregnancy or because of complications or requests, such as for leave, related to their pregnancy.

If you have experienced any form of these wrongful actions from your employer in Pasadena or nearby areas, you should consider speaking with an employment lawyer today for help.

FAQs

Q: What Can Your Employer Legally Say About You in California?

A: Under California state law, employers cannot say anything malicious about you to third parties, including providing unsolicited information about you or your performance. Employers also cannot make any statements regarding your religious or political beliefs or union activities. Employees in California have certain rights to privacy, and they deserve to have those rights protected. If you are an employee and you have questions surrounding what human resources can say about you, you should contact an experienced employment attorney.

Q: How Do I File a Complaint Against My Employer in California?

A: To file a complaint against your employer, you should first attempt to resolve the issue internally. You should report the issue to your supervisor or human resources contact. If your complaint is not resolved, then you can contact the appropriate government agencies.

The California Civil Rights Department can handle complaints related to discrimination, retaliation, or other forms of harassment. The Division of Labor Standards Enforcement handles complaints related to minimum wage and overtime. Each agency has procedures for filing complaints.

Q: What Is Considered Wrongful Termination in California?

A: A wrongful termination in California is any unlawful dismissal of an employee. It is unlawful for an employer in California to terminate an employee based on protected characteristics such as race, religion, sex, disability, age, or pregnancy status. If you are an employee who has been wrongfully terminated, you may be able to seek legal action against your employer. Speaking with an employment law attorney can help you receive the appropriate compensation.

Q: Could My Employer Punish Me for Filing a Complaint?

A: It is unlawful for your employer to punish you in any way for filing a complaint. As an employee, you are protected from any form of retaliation by your employer. Retaliation could include forms of harassment, reassignments, reduction in pay, demotions, changes in duties, or differential treatment. California state labor laws prohibit employers from terminating, demoting, disciplining, or otherwise threatening an employee for filing a protected complaint. If you believe your employer is retaliating against you for engaging in protected activity, you should consider engaging the help of an employment law attorney.

Speak With an Attorney Today

Employment law can encompass many different topics and it’s important that employees are aware of the rights protected under law. Unfortunately, it can be challenging to understand employment and labor laws in California, especially without the help of an experienced employment law attorney. Employers must be held accountable for their actions and for any labor law violations that they may incur. A qualified employment law attorney can help with this process.

At Hennig Kramer Ruiz & Singh, LLP, our legal team is ready to assist California employees with all matters pertaining to legal questions surrounding employment. Our team is experienced, and we have helped individuals all over the state of California resolve their legal cases. It’s crucial that you have a legal team on your side able to look out for your interests. Contact our office today to speak with our team for help with your case.

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