If you or a loved one has been mistreated at work, please do not hesitate to discuss your legal options with our experienced Huntington Beach employment lawyers. Companies that foster a hostile environment or mistreat their workers should be held accountable for their wrongdoing.
The Southern California personal injury attorneys of Bisnar Chase have represented employees for over 44 years. We are based in Orange County and have attorneys who focus solely on employment cases. They handle various cases, including discrimination, harassment, wrongful termination, wage and hour, whistleblower cases, and much more. They have won millions of dollars for their clients.
If you have been the victim of workplace violations or employer mistreatment in or near Huntington Beach, contact the law offices of Bisnar Chase. Our Huntington Beach employment attorneys are here to help. Call (949) 203-3814 for a free consultation.
Huntington Beach Employment Law
What Are My Rights As An Employee?
California laws are set in place to protect employees in the workforce and hold employers accountable for their wrongdoing. Laws enforced by the state of California declare that employers may not fire or discriminate against workers based on their age, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, or disabilities.
Employees who inform a superior of illegal or inappropriate activity within the organization are also guarded under California state law. An employer can not retaliate aggressively or terminate someone’s employment due to worker whistleblowing. The United States Department of Labor stated that a whistleblower is safeguarded from an employer “firing, blacklisting, demoting, denying overtime and promotions, etc..”
These employment laws also apply to applicants.
What Are Employee Rights Laws?
Employee rights laws are designed to protect employees from unfair and illegal treatment.
The first law that is usually discussed in relation to employment is the National Labor Relations Act. It gives employees the right to organize into unions, bargain collectively with their employer, and participate in strikes and other forms of protest. The NLRA also protects the right of employers to organize into associations but not to bargain collectively.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) was established by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. It has been given enforcement powers by Congress and is responsible for investigating charges of discrimination against employers covered by Title VII (most private sector employers).
What is the Purpose of These Employee Rights Laws?
Employee rights laws protect employees and ensure their employers are not exploiting them. They are designed to provide a level playing field for both the employer and the employee.
5 Common Types of Huntington Beach Employment Law Disputes
Many workers often wonder if they have a strong foundation for their employment law case. If you have been bullied or pressured to perform a task you are not comfortable with, this can signal that you need to file an employment claim.
Filing a claim will help you earn compensation for damages such as lost wages and medical expenses. Speak to a Huntington Beach employment lawyer to explore your legal options for your work dispute.
The most common claims filed in a law dispute include:
- Discrimination: Many employers ask questions about race and ethnicity in their applications. This is a slippery slope. While it is not illegal to inquire about race on a job application, the question of how that information will be used must be asked. Some businesses need information on the race of their applicants for affirmative action reasons. Any use of this type of information beyond tracing applicant flow and affirmative action numbers is suspicious. If you believe you have been discriminated against because of your race, sex, age, religious beliefs, or sexual orientation, you would be well-advised to speak with an experienced Huntington Beach employment lawyer. Depending on the circumstances of your case, you may be eligible for compensation for how you have been treated and any losses you may have suffered.
- Sexual Harassment: According to the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, sexual harassment is a “…form of sex discrimination that violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title VII applies to employers with 15 or more employees, including state and local governments. It also applies to employment agencies, labor organizations, and the federal government.” A critical factor that must be present in a sexual harassment claim is that the acts that were proposed to the employee were “unwelcomed.” It is also important to note that sexual harassment is not exclusive to just one gender. The Conversation reported that many men are sexually harassed in the workplace. An estimated 37% of men have experienced unwelcome sexual advances from co-workers or employers.
- Wrongful Termination: If you feel your contract with your employer has been violated, you have the right to file a wrongful termination claim. Wrongful termination claims do not only entail being fired due to discrimination but also involve an employer retaliating against a worker. Employees who had acted as “whistleblowers” may face resentment and anger from their employer. A whistleblower is an employee who reveals information about any illegal or prohibited actions that are taking place inside the company. You should know that employers are not permitted to retaliate against an employee that takes a stand against discrimination. This means that companies cannot retaliate against an employee who opposes workplace discrimination or files a discrimination complaint. In other words, you have rights, and those rights are protected. There are laws to assure workers that they are free from mistreatment and losing their job. Workers who feel and have substantial evidence that their employment was terminated for illegal or unfair reasons should contact a Huntington Beach legal expert.
- Severance agreements: When an employer terminates a worker’s employment, they may offer the ex-employee a severance package. A severance package is usually given to workers who have been released from employment. Packages are also provided to employees who are retiring. Severance packages are typically comprised of finances that will support an ex-employee until hired by a new employer. Finances that are included in severance packages include medical insurance, dental insurance, paid time off, and sick leave. Experts say that it is essential to have an attorney review the agreement and offer a severance package. If you immediately accept an offer of a severance package, you may give up rights or compensation.
- Wage disputes: Employers who failed to pay employees the amount stated in their contract upon hire or have not been paid for the duration of their employment should file a work dispute. Employers who do not pay a worker the wages promised are violating the basis of an employee’s contract and are breaking the law. Wage disputes are usually associated with employees not being paid the standard federal wage. Other instances where a wage issue may arise could include if an employee was not paid the overtime they earned. If your employer stated that they would pay you within a short period of time and they have yet to follow through with that promise, then you should pursue a wage dispute.
Ideally, your employer will recognize that your rights have been violated and offer you a fair settlement without dragging out the claim process in court. Some cases require litigation to hold the at-fault employer accountable for their wrongdoing. Your actions may even help protect other employees who your employer has wronged.
Huntington Beach Class Action Lawsuits in Employment Law
A class action lawsuit involves a number of employees or plaintiffs filing a claim against a single employer. To be able to file an employment class action lawsuit, an entire group of employees would have had to experience mistreatment.
No exact amount of plaintiffs is required to file a class action claim. Usually, if you would like to get the maximum compensation for all employees, experts state having a minimum of 40 would be beneficial.
Steps You Should Take If You have Been Wrongfully Terminated
Being let go by an employer can be devastating. Many are left in a state of shock, confusion, and despair. Not knowing how you will pay for your monthly expenses can be stressful. Before you seek help from a Huntington Beach employment attorney, you can take steps to make filing a wrongful termination claim easier.
Some measures you should take after being wrongfully terminated involve:
- Remaining calm: If you lose control and act violently or aggressively towards your employer after you have been let go, your actions can be used against you later on in the legal process. Throughout the whole process, be professional.
- Finding out who fired you: Finding out who terminated your employment can sometimes lead to why you were let go. For example, if you reported to a higher-up that your direct manager was harassing you and then you were fired, the events timeline could reveal who fired you.
- Gathering information in emails that exuded mistreatment: Discrimination in the workplace can be proven by witnesses or through documentation such as emails. It is essential to collect witness statements from co-workers and emails that exuded hostility towards you.
- Asking why you were let go: An employer does not have to justify why you were fired if they are located in an at-will state. In an at-will state, an employer can fire you for any reason and does not have to tell you why. If you were provided with an employment contract, the document should state on what grounds your employer can fire you.
- Returning all company property: It is illegal for a past employer to withhold your last paycheck from you until you have returned company property. If your employer has not paid you because you did not return company property, you have the right to file a lawsuit. It is beneficial for you to return all possessions to the organization so it will not affect your case after hiring a Huntington Beach employment attorney.
Contact an Employment Attorney in Huntington Beach
The experienced Huntington Beach employment lawyers at Bisnar Chase have a long and successful track record of helping workers obtain justice and fair compensation for their losses. Please call us at (949) 203-3814 or contact us today for a free, comprehensive, and confidential consultation.
Making decisions in the workplace based solely on race is unacceptable and against the law. Decisions that cannot be made based solely on race include hiring, firing, and promotions. Discrimination has no place in the workplace. In the workplace, racial discrimination can occur during the hiring process, during decisions regarding promotions, or it can involve wrongful terminations.
The law group of Bisnar Chase has been fighting for workers’ rights for over 40 years. We believe that you and your family should not have to suffer due to an employer’s wrongdoings.
Contact us today to receive a free case analysis.