Fight Back Against Wrongful Termination and Retaliation

Every day, numerous people are terminated from their employment. In California, employers are allowed to terminate employees for many reasons, so long as those reasons do not violate the employee’s legal rights. When someone is terminated or “fired” from their employment for reasons such as race, sexual orientation, pregnancy, or disability, or for complaining about unlawful conditions, that is considered a “wrongful termination”.

At the Employees Advocates at Winston Law Group, P.C, we represent clients throughout California who have been wrongfully terminated. We understand the significant financial consequences and emotional distress that a wrongful termination can have on you and your family. Our goal is to help you protect your legal rights and get the compensation you deserve.

Can I Be Fired for Any Reason?

No. Although California is an at-will employment state, an employee cannot be terminated based upon certain protected characteristics or for engaging in protected activities. However, unfortunately under California law your boss can terminate you if they just don’t like you or for other personal reasons. Below are a non-exhaustive list of reasons that employers cannot fire employees:

  • Race
  • Religion
  • Age (over 40)
  • Disability, mental and physical
  • Sex, gender (including pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding or related medical conditions)
  • Sexual orientation
  • Marital status
  • Medical condition
  • For reporting safety violations
  • For reporting or refusing to engage in illegal conduct
  • For taking a medical leave
  • For applying for workers’ compensation
  • For participating in union activities
  • For filing and/or participating in a lawsuit seeking unpaid wages
  • For participating in investigations or lawsuits related to discrimination or harassment experienced by another employee
  • For being associated with (meaning a friend or family member) of an employee with a protected characteristic or engaged in protected activities
  • For being a victim of domestic violence and/or stalking
  • Parents who take time-off to participate in school activities
  • Military and veteran status
  • Ancestry/ National origin
  • Gender identity, gender expression
  • Genetic information

Retaliation

In addition to wrongful termination, it is also illegal to retaliate against an employee who reports an employer for harassment or discrimination, or other unlawful conduct. It is illegal for employers to retaliate by:

  • Falsifying negative performance reviews
  • Overlooking the employee for promotions or raises
  • Termination due to a report of unlawful conduct

In addition to wrongful termination, it is also illegal to retaliate against an employee who reports an employer for harassment or discrimination, or other unlawful conduct. It is illegal for employers to retaliate by:

Can My Employer Retaliate Against Me For Bringing a Case or Filing a Claim?

No. Labor Code § 98.6 prohibits employers from retaliating or taking any adverse actions against employees who file a claim, participate in an investigation, or assist another employee with their claim. Labor Code § 1102.5 also prohibits an employer from retaliating against employees who complain about unlawful conduct or treatment to either the employer or the State of California.

Wrongful Termination or Retaliation Lawsuit Information

In order to file a wrongful termination lawsuit, you must be able to prove that the termination was wrongful, and you must follow the procedures set forth in California labor laws. This process can be complex and can take some time, which is why it is best done with the help of a skilled employment law attorney.

If you are successful in your wrongful termination or retaliation lawsuit, you may be able to recover damages, such as:

  • Back Pay (past lost wages)
  • Front Pay (future lost wages)
  • Hiring/Reinstatement
  • Reasonable accommodations
  • Damages for emotional distress
  • Punitive damages
  • Attorneys’ fees and costs

The only way to determine what legal action and remedies your case qualifies for is to consult with a California employment law attorney.

Scroll to Top