If you believe that you have been released from your job for wrongful reasons, call the law firm of Bisnar Chase now at 949-203-3814 for a free consultation. Our Anaheim employment lawyers will work diligently on your case to deliver you justice.
The law offices of Bisnar Chase have been representing employees who have suffered from workplace and employer violations for more than 40 years. We handle a wide range of employment law cases, from wrongful termination and discrimination to wage and hour complaints.
If you have been subjected to unfair or unlawful conditions by your employer, whether they are in or near Anaheim or elsewhere in Orange County, contact our labor and employment attorneys today.
Common Types of Harassment in the Workplace
Harassment in a work environment is classified as any unwelcomed behavior that an employee has experienced. Many employees go without notifying someone of the abuse because they fear that they will be terminated or fear that the harassment will only worsen if reported. At times, some workers do not even realize they are being harassed.
Harassment can involve…
Cyberbullying: Although this type of harassment has been popularized amongst teenagers in social media, this type of behavior has also emerged in the workplace. Boundaries of what is appropriate online have been blurred and it can be difficult for employees to detect. If you feel as though your boss or co-worker has harsh undertones in an email this can be considered cyberbullying. Other examples of cyberbullying can include threatening emails, comments about you on a social media site, or spreading rumors and lies through online chats at work.
Abuse of power: An employee taking advantage of a worker in a multitude of ways is abusing their power. A supervisor abusing their power can be using favoritism, demanding that an employee take on personal tasks and financial malfeasance. Where does an employee take their complaint if they are being taken advantage of by their higher-up? You can contact the human resources department of your company or if you do not feel comfortable you can always file a claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or seek legal help from a professional that specializes in employment law.
Quid pro quo: The term quid pro quo in Latin means “something for something.” An example of this may be if a supervisor explains that if an employee were to perform a sexual act with them, they would be granted a raise or promotion for doing so. Quid pro quo does not only involve sexual proposals though. If a manager is offering a promotion or higher pay to cover up or keep quiet about any illegal activity this is also classified as quid pro quo. This evolves to harassment when an employer retaliates if the employee refuses to perform the acts.
Third-party harassment: If a worker is being harassed by a third party such as a sponsor of the business or a supplier of another business this is known as third-party harassment. Employees have the right to make a claim against someone who does not directly work in the company. If a person who “works with” the company as opposed to being employed by a company is harassing a worker an employment dispute claim can be filed against them.
Verbal harassment: Verbal harassment can happen in private between two employees, but it can also be done in front of a group. If you are being harassed verbally you may be dealing with an employee or employer calling you names, using vulgar language when speaking to you, raising their voice at you, insulting you, making jokes at your expense, or using racial slurs to address you. If you are experiencing any of these incidents report it to the human resources department of your company immediately. Also, keep track of any witness or emails showing this abuse so you may present it to a labor law attorney as evidence later on.
Employees Let Go "At-Will" In California
Most workers in California are considered “at-will employees.” This means that they can be let go at the discretion of their employer at any time for a legitimate reason.
Workers who are not considered “at-will” include union employees and employees who are under contract for a specific duration of time. All other employees will not have the opportunity to hold their employer accountable for their termination unless wrongdoing was involved.
Retaliation and Wrongful Termination Lawsuits
A wrongful termination case can also involve retaliation from the “whistle-blowing” actions of a former employee.
All employees in California have the legal right to report safety concerns and violations at their workplace. Employers cannot take action against employees simply because they exercised their right to report wrongdoing at their workplace.
Examples of whistle-blowing could be mistreatment in the workplace, harassment or safety violations.
If the employer finds out which employee reported the issue, they cannot legally let that employee go based solely on the report. If you feel that you have been let go out of retaliation by an employer contact a wrongful termination California lawyer.
The Difference Between Workers Compensation and Filing a Lawsuit
Workers Compensation is a form of insurance that employers buy to aid their employees when they have fallen ill or have been injured. If you are given worker’s compensation you technically are giving up the right to sue your employer if you are hurt on the job.
Workers’ compensation is a “no-fault system” and can be tricky to tackle.
You can however sue your employer if you have experienced the following:
- Physical Abuse, such as being hit by somebody or you have been threatened by someone at work
- Inflicting Emotional suffering
Discrimination at Work
There are many forms of workplace discrimination and all forms are illegal.
Do you believe that you were let go not because of your performance at work but because of your age? This is known as age discrimination.
Have you and other workers been let go because of your race or ethnicity? Race discrimination is not only morally wrong, but it is also illegal and punishable by law.
Do you believe that you were let go because of your gender identity or sexuality? Do you have reasons to believe that your employer let you go due to the religion or spirituality that you subscribe to? All of these forms of discrimination can land your former employer in hot water if found guilty in a court of law.
In addition, if you have religious obligations outside of work, your employer must comply with these obligations or this too can get your former employer in a lot of trouble.
Sexual Harassment in the Workplace
The Huffington Post reported that one in three women have been sexually harassed in a work environment. The study also revealed that women 18-34 are the common ages that women experience being sexually harassed.
The EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) has determined sexual harassment to be anything that goes against the Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Sexual harassment can include:
- Uninvited sexual advances
- Presenting a desire for sexual favors
- Displaying explicit or unwelcome sexual behavior
What Do I Do If I Have Been Sexually Harassed?
Being harassed can not only tremendously affect your emotional state negatively, but it also can prevent others from speaking up as well. There are measures that one could take to provide some kind of relief when filing for a sexual harassment suit in the workplace.
Document the Act or Verbiage Used In the Situation
When filing a sexual harassment claim it can easily turn into a “he said she said” situation. Reporting specific verbiage and actions that you experienced in the situation can immensely help your case. Also, it is suggested that you document any witnesses to the scene.
Write Down Your Conversation With Human Resources
It is important to jot down what was talked about in your meeting with HR. The reason being that if HR for some reason did lose or discredit any information with statements such as the “she never told me that” or “the employee didn’t specify the extent of the harassment” you have documentation as your alibi.
Speak to an Employment Lawyer
If you do not feel as though your Human Resources department is managing the situation to your satisfaction, it is strongly advised that you take legal action. Your lawyer will also layout if you even have a case. If you don’t if the situation occurs again she/he will advise you on what actions to take for next time.
Protecting the Rights of Employees Across California
Employees have a number of rights under United States Federal Laws.
For example, all seriously ill employees are allowed to take off from work without the threat of termination under the California Family Rights Act. Employers may be frustrated because of the timing of the employee’s illness, but they may not fire the employee because of it.
What to Do if You Are Wrongfully Terminated
It is important that you stay calm and keep your composure while being let go. Even though you may feel angry and emotional, it is important that you do not do or say anything that you will regret later.
Were you offered a severance package? It may be in your best interest to have the terms put in writing. It may not be in your best interest to accept your employer’s first offer.
If your employer suggests you resign instead of being terminated, please do not do so. If you resign, you could risk losing your chances of receiving unemployment benefits.
If you believe that you have been let go not for financial reasons or for performance reasons but because of your age, race, sex, gender, or sexual orientation, it may be in your best interest to call the Anaheim employment workplace lawyer at Bisnar Chase.
Hire our Southern California Employment Law Attorneys
Sometimes, the only option a wronged employee has for justice and compensation is a lawsuit against his or her former employer. The claimant will have to prove that he or she was let go for wrongful reasons and that the employer violated the law in some way.
The knowledgeable Anaheim employment lawyers at Bisnar Chase can help you as well as other victims determine if their rights were violated and if compensation is available for their lost wages and other damages.
A skilled harassment lawyer can assess the circumstances of the case and help the wronged employee determine his or her best course of action.
We are passionate about upholding the rights of Orange County workers and our workplace lawyers specialize in multiple practice areas. If you have been wrongfully terminated from your job, please contact us for a free, comprehensive, and confidential case review.
Call us now at 949-203-3814 for a free consultation.