Santa Clara Employment Lawyer
Businesses depend on their employees to carry out the work needed for the company to succeed. Of course, employees also depend on their employers for their paychecks and livelihood. For employees, challenging the person or company that they rely on to support themselves and their family is a frightening prospect. Employees often feel that they are not on equal footing with their employer, especially because that employer has resources not available to the employee. Every employee in California needs to understand the law ensures your protection from many wrongful actions at the hands of your employer. California state law has robust protections against workplace harassment, discrimination, wrongful termination, and violations of wage and hour laws. If your employer engages in any of these wrongful behaviors, you have the right to file a claim against that employer in order to hold them accountable for their wrongful actions.
The attorneys at the Costanzo Law Firm work to ensure that employees in California are able to challenge their employers and fight for true fair treatment in the workplace. To learn more about your rights and how we can help you, call us today at 408-993-8493 for a consultation with one of our dedicated Santa Clara employment lawyers.
- Disability Discrimination
- Executive Compensation
- Sexual Harassment
- Whistleblowing & Retaliation
- Wrongful Termination
Wage and Hour Violations
Employees must be paid the state minimum wage and overtime if that employee works in excess of 40 hours a week or 8 hours a day. Overtime pay rates are set at time and a half. Employers do not have the power to pay an employee less than what is mandated by the state. If your employer owes you pay for overtime work or if your employer refuses to provide you with proper break times, you likely have a claim against that company. Contact a Santa Clara, California, employment law attorney to discuss your rights and your ability to collect compensation from an employer who has violated your wages or work hours.
Rights Against Discrimination
Employers in California have the ability to make many employment-related decisions for their workers. It is typically up to employers when to fire, hire, promote, demote, or otherwise change an individual’s employment status. After all, most employees in California are working at will. Although “at-will” employees may be fired at any time and without the employer owing any explanation for their decision to terminate that individual, there are exceptions to this rule. California law protects employees from discrimination based on a wide variety of traits and attributes. For instance, your employer cannot decide to fire you because you are over 40 years old, refuse to hire you based on your race, or deny you a promotion based on your pregnancy. The following categories are all protected by state law:
- country of origin
- race or color
- gender identity
- sexual orientation
- marital status
- genetic information
- medical condition
- military/veteran status
If your employer makes decisions related to your employment status based on any of the above, contact a Santa Clara, California, employment law attorney today.
Rights Against Harassment
Harassment at work is a violation of California law. Of course, sexual harassment, which includes quid pro quo arrangements as well as other wrongful behavior, is based on a person’s sex, which is a widely known form of harassment. However, employees in California are also protected from harassment based on their race, age, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, and many other categories. Harassment occurs when an employer creates an environment that is hostile to the employee suffering from such harassment. If you believe that your employer is harassing you in violation of California state law, contact a Santa Clara, California, employment law attorney today.
Retaliation in Santa Clara
Employers cannot retaliate against their employees when those employees have brought a claim against the employer for discrimination, harassment, or wage violations, for instance. It is also illegal for employers to terminate an employee who is a whistleblower. Whistleblowers are individuals who report illegal or unsafe behavior and practices at their place of employment.
Retaliation may come in the form of wrongful termination, but there are other forms of retaliation as well. If your employer refuses to promote you, demotes you, or otherwise takes actions that negatively impact you at work in retaliation for filing a claim or taking some other protected action, speak to a Santa Clara, California, employment law attorney to discuss your legal options.
Wrongful termination claims can be filed against employers when the employer terminates an individual’s position with their company for prohibited reasons. As mentioned, discrimination is one reason which employers may not fire an employee, even those who are working at will. Retaliation for whistleblower claims is also prohibited. An employee who has a reasonable belief that the employer is in violation of a law or safety standard, but who is incorrect, is also protected by whistleblower protections. If your employer fired you for reporting a suspected violation, that employer might be liable for wrongful termination. To learn more about the protections available to you, contact a Santa Clara employment law attorney today.
What to Do When Your Employer Violates Your Rights
If you believe that your employer has violated your workplace rights, contact an attorney to discuss your legal options for filing a claim. In many cases, you will have to first go through one of the agencies designed to protect employees in their places of work. In the case of federal claims, you will contact the EEOC, and in the case of state law claims, you will contact the Department of Fair Housing and Employment. Those agencies will then be able to determine whether you have a claim and will either take action against the employer or send you a letter indicating that you have the right to sue. Your attorney will be able to guide you through the system and ensure that your rights are protected.
Call the Costanzo Law Firm Today for Help With Employment Law in Santa Clara
At the Costanzo Law Firm, our attorneys understand how difficult it can be to challenge your employer. We will fight to protect your rights and get compensation from your employer for the wrongs enacted against you. Call us today at 408-993-8493 to discuss your claim with a dedicated Santa Clara employment law attorney.