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Costanzo Law Firm, APC Costanzo Law Firm APC
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Palo Alto Employment Lawyer

Facing conflict with an employer is a tense situation. Many employees fear that they will lose their ability to support themselves and their families if they lose their jobs, and challenging an employer for unfair treatment may feel like too big of a risk to take. When it comes to employee and employer relationships, the stakes are particularly high for the employee. However, it is important to know that you have legally protected rights that your employer cannot violate. When it comes to wrongful terminations, harassment, discrimination, and wage violations, the law is likely on your side. All you need is a powerful legal advocate to handle your case and ensure that your rights are protected.

At the Costanzo Law Firm, our Palo Alto employment law attorneys work with employees who face mistreatment at the hands of their employers. We know how hard it can be to stand up to a powerful adversary. When the future of your career and financial well-being are on the line, you need to find an experienced and dedicated employment law attorney. Call us today at 408-993-8493 to discuss your claim.

Wage and Hour Rights

Your employer must pay you the mandatory minimum wage for hourly work in California. That wage changes from year to year, and your wages must reflect the current minimum. If you work for more than eight hours a day or 40 hours a week, you are entitled to time and a half for the additional hours as overtime compensation. If your employer is not properly compensating you or is denying breaks to which you are entitled, contact a Palo Alto employment law attorney right away to discuss your claim.

Rights Against Discrimination

Discrimination comes in many forms. Employers are prohibited from discriminating against employees in California based on the following protected categories:

  • sex
  • gender
  • age
  • disability
  • religion
  • ethnicity
  • country of origin
  • race or color
  • gender identity
  • sexual orientation
  • marital status
  • pregnancy
  • genetic information
  • medical condition
  • military/veteran status

Discrimination happens when an employer denies you employment, terminates your employment, or otherwise makes important decisions to your detriment based on one of the above-protected factors. In the case of disabilities, your employer may have to accommodate your disability so long as the accommodations are considered reasonable.

If you have questions regarding discrimination in the workplace, contact a Palo Alto employment law attorney.

Rights Against Harassment

Harassment, like disability claims, is based on protected classes. In California, those protected categories include:

  • color
  • race
  • religion
  • ancestry
  • age
  • sexual orientation
  • gender
  • gender identity
  • disability
  • medical condition
  • genetic information
  • military status
  • marital status

If an employer or co-workers create an environment that is hostile for a worker based on that individual’s membership in a protected class, then the employee is suffering from workplace harassment. Harassment includes sexual harassment but can also involve harassment based on race, age, or any other category. You are entitled to a workplace in which you are not subjected to these forms of harassment. If you are being harassed at work, call a Palo Alto employment law attorney to learn your options for pursuing a claim.

Rights Against Retaliation

The law recognizes the fact that employees fear retaliation at the hands of employers who carry out other workplace violations. If people were too afraid to take action against employers who violate their rights, then the laws protecting employees would often fail to be useful forms of protection. If you are wronged by your employer, you have the right to take action. If that employer retaliates, then that business is again in violation of the law. Contact a Palo Alto attorney to learn more about how California law can protect you and how a legal advocate can stand up for your rights.

Rights Against Wrongful Termination

Most California workers are “at-will” employees. In most cases, this means that your employer has the right to end your employment at any time without offering a reason for terminating you. There are cases, however, when your employer fires you for reasons that are legally prohibited. For instance, an employer cannot terminate your employment in a way that qualifies as discrimination or retaliation. Of course, employers may provide false excuses for their decision to terminate an employee. An attorney can help expose the actions taken to create that false pretense for firing an employee. A successful case against an employer will result in damages for the employee who suffered wrongful termination. In some cases, employees may even recover punitive damages.

If you believe that you were wrongfully terminated, contact a Palo Alto employment law attorney right away to discuss your rights. Deadlines are in place to keep people from filing cases long after the alleged events take place, so do not waste time.

What to Do if Your Employer Violated Your Rights

Filing a claim against an employer involves notifying the Equal Employment Opportunity Council (EEOC) if you plan to file a federal lawsuit, or with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) in the case of California state claims. These agencies will either take action against the company or provide you with a letter stating that you have the right to move forward with a lawsuit. An attorney will be able to guide you through this process.

Contact the experienced attorneys at Costanzo Law Firm to learn how we can protect your rights. Call today at 408-993-8493 for a consultation with one of our dedicated Palo Alto employment law attorneys.

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