Wrongful termination is termination of an employee for an illegal reason or in violation of the employee’s rights. Although most employments in California are considered to be “at-will,” meaning that the employer can demote or terminate an employee at any time and for any reason or no reason at all, it is illegal for an employer to terminate a person’s employment because of the employee’s legally protected actions or characteristics. For example, an employee who is terminated because of unlawful discrimination or because the employee uncovered illegal or unsafe activities by the employer, may have a claim for wrongful termination. If you feel you may have been wrongfully terminated, read more about wrongful termination in the FAQ and contact Mozaffari Law at 323.696.0702 or Info@mozaffarilaw.com for a confidential consultation.Discrimination
It is illegal in California for an employer to discriminate against an employee on the basis of the employee’s race, religion, color, national origin, ancestry, physical or mental disability/medical condition, marital status, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age and pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions. Such unlawful discriminatory motives may determine hiring, promotion, compensation, layoff and termination decisions on the part of the employer, and often play out in more subtle ways. For example, an employee who is suffering from a disability or is pregnant may be subject to additional scrutiny in his or her performance in a way that other employees are not – leading to termination as a result of the additional or unfair scrutiny. If you believe you are being subjected to unlawful discrimination, contact Mozaffari Law at 323.696.0702 or Info@mozaffarilaw.com for a confidential consultation.Sexual Harassment
Sexual harassment is expressly prohibited by California law. The law protects employees from conduct including, but not limited to, unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors and other verbal or physical conduct of sexual nature. Sexual harassment, however, often takes more subtle forms that over time may create a hostile work environment for the employee or could amount to quid pro quo sexual harassment. Mozaffari Law has substantial experience in identifying the more subtle sexual harassment cases, in addition to our success in achieving results for clients in the more “classic” cases. To read more about types of sexual harassment, review the FAQ. If you believe you are being subjected to unlawful sexual harassment, contact Mozaffari Law at 323.696.0702 or Info@mozaffarilaw.com for a confidential consultation.Other Forms of Harassment
Other forms of harassment and hostile work environment created because of an employee’s protected characteristics, such as age, race, disability, religion, etc., is similarly illegal. Employees of different backgrounds may experience harassment in the workplace because of their race, gender, religion, age, disability or other protected characteristics without being aware of the protections afforded to them by California law. California law protects employees against offensive and unwelcome conduct based on certain protected characteristics, where such treatment amounts to a hostile work environment. In such cases, the employee may have a claim and a remedy. To read more about types of harassment, review the FAQ. If you believe you are being subjected to unlawful harassment, contact Mozaffari Law at 323.696.0702 or Info@mozaffarilaw.com for a confidential consultation.Retaliation
In addition to protecting employees against discrimination and harassment, California law protects employees who exercise their rights in the workplace. Such actions include, but are not limited to, taking a medial leave of absence, requesting reasonable accommodation, or protesting and reporting conduct by the employer that the employee reasonably believes to be unlawful. For instance, it is unlawful for an employer to retaliate against an employee for complaining about discrimination or harassment in the workplace. Similarly, an employee may have a retaliation claim if he or she is retaliated against for taking a pregnancy leave, a medical leave of absence, or for requesting accommodation for a disability. If you feel you are being treated unfairly or targeted because of a protected action you took in the workplace, you can read more about retaliation in the FAQ and/or contact Mozaffari Law at 323.696.0702 or Info@mozaffarilaw.com for a confidential consultation.Whistleblower Retaliation
It is similarly illegal for an employer to fire, demote, or otherwise retaliate against an employee for reporting or protesting conduct, conditions or practices by the employer, which the employee reasonably believes to be unlawful, or because of the employee’s refusal to participate in such illegal conduct. Depending on the industry, there are numerous state and federal laws and regulations that may be triggered by a whistleblower’s report or disclosure of a violation or non-compliance, whether it is done internally to the employer or to an outside governmental agency. If you feel you are being treated unfairly or targeted because you reported or raised concerns about an unlawful or unsafe conduct or practice, you can read more about retaliation in the FAQ and/or contact Mozaffari Law at 323.696.0702 or Info@mozaffarilaw.com for a confidential consultation.Wage & Hour
California and federal laws protect employees from unfair and illegal wage and hour practices. Such practices often include, but are not limited to, not paying for an employee’s regular or overtime hours worked, not paying employee’s commission wages, or the failure to provide meal and rest breaks to hourly employees. Although some workers are properly classified as “exempt” from some of these wage and hour laws, many employees are improperly designated by their employers as exempt and paid a fixed salary, rather than their regular and overtime hours worked. Increasingly, many employees are also falsely classified by employers as independent contractors in order to avoid these wage and hour obligations altogether. If you feel that you are not being properly compensated for your work, you can read more about California wage and hour law in the FAQ or contact Mozaffari Law at 323.696.0702 or Info@mozaffarilaw.com for a confidential consultation.