California is an at-will state when it comes to employment which generally means that an employer can terminate an employee with or without notice or without cause. However, an employer CANNOT terminate an employee for an illegal reason. If it does, the employer has wrongfully terminated that employee. Both California and Federal law prohibit wrongful termination based on certain characteristics by covered employers1. California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (“FEHA”) protects you against unlawful termination based on the following improper reasons:
- Age (40 or over)
- Religious Creed (including religious dress and grooming practices)
- Denial of Family and Medical Care Leave
- Disability (mental and physical)
- Marital Status
- Medical Condition
- Genetic Information
- Military and Veteran Status
- National Origin
- Sex (including pregnancy, childbirth and medical conditions related to pregnancy)
- Gender, Gender Identity, and Gender Expression
- Sexual Orientation
If you were wrongfully terminated because of one of these reasons, you may be entitled to compensation in the form of lost wages, future lost wages, and due to emotional distress caused by such egregious conduct. Contact The Law Office of George Moschopoulos, APC today for a FREE 30-minute phone consultation to find out how this Orange County Employment Lawyer can assist you.
Remember you have a limited amount of time under which you must bring any wrongful termination claims against your employer. It is imperative that you contact an attorney as soon as you can after you are terminated to preserve your rights.
1 Under California’s Fair Employment Housing Act, a covered employer is generally one who employs five or more employees.