Facing a wrongful termination can be one of the most unsettling experiences in one’s career. It can leave someone feeling vulnerable and uncertain about the state of their future. In addition to the job loss, it can damage someone’s personal dignity and professional reputation. In these situations, it’s critical to have an Oceanside wrongful termination lawyer on your side for much-needed support and guidance to restore justice.
The Law Office of Frank S. Clowney III helps clients in these predicaments navigate the complexities of wrongful termination cases. Our firm’s approach is rooted in a deep understanding of both the emotional distress and legal intricacies faced by those who have unfairly been let go from their job. For this reason, we are forever dedicated to defending our clients’ rights against any misled accusations.
While there can be an infinite number of reasons why an employer might wrongfully terminate an employee, the most common motivations come from misunderstandings, biases, or a purposeful act to commit a crime. Some of the most common reasons include:
Sometimes, an employee is not fired for performance issues but rather for a protected characteristic, such as race, gender, age, pregnancy status, or sexual orientation. This is illegal under both federal and California law. Such cases can be hard to prove without an employment attorney’s support, as they can legally gather evidence to piece together your case.
If an employee observes something illegal at work and wants to whistleblow on the operation, an employer could act in retaliation to silence their voice. This could involve any number of negative work events, such as a forced demotion or being fired from the position.
If an employee refuses to fulfill an illegal request from a superior, they could face unlawful termination as part of their refusal. No one should be forced to participate in anything that makes them morally uncomfortable, and an employer has no right to threaten the individual’s livelihood to make them behave how they wish.
When an individual joins a company, there are typically a number of contracts that need to be signed as an agreement to the terms of the employment. This can act as a safeguard for employees to use against an employer who breaks this contract. For example, firing someone without the notice period that is specified in the employment contract is legally a breach of contract in Oceanside, CA.
You and your employment attorney can gather evidence to build your claim, including:
Investigators will want to see what type of positive or negative evaluations existed for the employee. A positive review could be used to counter an inaccurate claim that the employee was fired for poor performance, especially when the individual making the allegations is the evaluator themselves.
Different communication channels can be tapped into for evidence of intent or misinformation. These include emails, letters, text messages, and even social media posts. Such communications can show a clear pattern of behavior or any discriminatory remarks that were made after the employee engaged in a protected activity.
If there are any coworkers or other individuals who may have witnessed certain behaviors that indicate why you may have been wrongfully terminated, their testimony can be powerful enough to reinforce your own claim of innocence.
In Oceanside, California, the average wrongful termination settlement varies depending on the different specifics of the case, such as why someone was terminated, how much money they made, and how long they were employed. A settlement could include compensation for:
However, the strength of the case’s evidence and the employer’s conduct will determine the final settlement amount. Consulting with an employment attorney is the most accurate method of getting an exact estimate based on the details of your case.
Wrongful termination claims within the state can be filed with either the California Labor Commissioner’s Office or in state court. If the specific claim has any instances of harassment or discrimination, the claim can also be filed with the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing. All these agencies have specific deadlines and requirements for filing a claim, which is why having an attorney to help with these claims can ensure that proper filing procedures are followed.
California is recognized as an “at-will” employment state. This means that employers have the authority to terminate an employee without needing to provide a reason as long as that reason is not unjust. However, there can be some exceptions.
For example, if an employment contract specifically requires a cause for termination or a warning, the employment contract overrides California employment law. However, if there is any evidence that the decision was rooted in discrimination or retaliation, this can override the employment contract for at-will employees.
The required timeframe varies based on the nature of your claim. If you are filing it with the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing, you have up to three years to file since the date of termination. If you are suing for a breach of employment contract, the statute of limitations for these instances could be two to four years, depending on the contract’s terms. It’s always advised to promptly seek legal advice when filing a claim, as an attorney can ensure that no deadlines are missed that could jeopardize the case.
If you believe that your employer has wrongfully terminated your employment in California, contact our attorneys today. We take great pride in helping our clients get their positions back after a wrongful termination. Our firm would be honored to learn more about your case and how we can help right away.