Workers in California are protected by many state and federal employment laws. In fact, Californians enjoy some of the most comprehensive workplace protections in the entire country. It is important to enforce your legal rights in the workplace. Employers who violate these laws are likely to continue doing so unless they are held accountable. Many more employees could suffer harm from the same violations, and other employers could even try to get away with the same employment law violations.
Learn more about your legal rights in the workplace – and how a Bay Area employment attorney can help you enforce them. Here are some of the many employment cases our office handles:
Federal law prohibits discrimination in employment based on race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age (over forty), disabilities, and genetic information. California state law expands on these categories to offer some of the most comprehensive protections of any state. It is important to take action as soon as you suspect discrimination in the workplace. Often, the conduct becomes worse and more abusive unless it is corrected immediately.
Sexual harassment is not the only type of harassment that is legally prohibited in the workplace. California workers are also protected from harassment based on other legally protected categories, such as race and religion.
The Americans With Disabilities Act requires employers to make “reasonable accommodations” for disabled workers and job applicants. If the worker requires an accommodation that does not pose an “undue burden” on the employer, they cannot be discriminated against based on that disability. Much case law in this area focuses on whether an accommodation is “reasonable” or not. Our experienced legal team can help protect your rights under the ADA before you even start applying for jobs.
There are many different whistleblower protections written into various reporting laws. In general, a whistleblower can be protected from retaliation when they report wrongdoing to the proper authorities. In order to have this legal protection, however, the employee must report the correct information to the correct government agency. Consult with a whistleblower protection attorney before making any report to ensure that you have all legal protections to which you are entitled.
California law requires most hourly employees to be paid overtime at wages at the rate of 1.5 times their normal hourly rate. Employees can be exempt from overtime pay, but only if certain legal requirements are met. Some employers wrongly classify workers as exempt in order to get out of paying required overtime. An employer might also round down or “shave time” in order to make it appear that you did not work enough hours to qualify for overtime pay. In some cases, an employee might be required to attend mandatory training or community events but not be paid. This can also be a violation of your right to be paid. Consult with our legal team to be sure that you are being paid fair wages – including overtime – for all the hours you are required to work.
There is no legal requirement for employers to offer severance pay to every worker. Many workers are, however, entitled to severance pay as a result of their employment contract or a union agreement. Your employer is not likely to offer all the severance you are owed. Contact us to determine what your severance pay rights are.
No matter what employment concerns you have, please reach out to Bryan Schwartz Law for help. Contact us for a consultation about how we can protect your rights as an employee.
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