In California, most employment is considered "at will". This form of employment follows the principle that either the employer or the employee may terminate the relationship at any point, for any reason. The only exception to "at-will" employment is that the employment can not be terminated in a manner that breaks the law.
Employment not falling in the "at will" category is subject to different limitations and requirements, so you should be sure to know the classification of your work setup. In general, employment that is subject to a set period employment contract is not considered to be "at will", and termination may only happen in accordance with procedures outlined in the contract.
What are the Illegal Grounds for Terminating At Will Employment in California?
Discrimination is the most common unlawful grounds for terminating an employee in California. Employers are not allowed to terminate an employee because of their race, religion, nationality, or gender. An Alameda employer also is prohibited from terminating at-will employees as a form of retaliation if the worker has sought an investigation into discrimination or has filed a legal claim for discrimination against the employer.
Furthermore, the Family and Medical Leave act makes it illegal for employers to terminate any of their employees who have taken leave based upon family or medical needs. Finally, an employer may not terminate an employee for refusing to do something illegal, for exercising a legal right, or performing a legal obligation.
Do I Need a California Attorney for My Wrongful Termination Case?
Attorneys in Alameda, California may be able to inform you as to whether a wrongful termination has occurred, and can assist you in collecting the required documents for your case. There may also be unique or unfamiliar procedures, and an attorney can guide you through these as well.