In California, most employment is considered "at will". This type of employment follows the principle that either the employer or the employee may terminate the relationship at any time, for any reason. The only basic exception in "at-will" employment arrangements is that the termination may not be done for reasons which violate the law.
Employment that does not fall into the category of "at will" is not subject to the same restrictions. Therefore, it is important that you identify what type of employment arrangement you are involved in. Typically, if your employment arrangement was for a set term, it is not "at will", and the employment can only be terminated according to procedure contained in the contract.
What are the Illegal Grounds for Terminating At Will Employment in California?
In the state of California, employee discrimination is the most common illegal ground for termination in an at-will employment. Employers are prohibited from terminating their employees on the basis of race, gender, religion, or nationality. A Fairfield employer also is prohibited from terminating at-will employees as a method of retaliation if the worker has sought an investigation into discrimination or has filed a legal claim for discrimination against the employer.
Additionally, according to the Family and Medical leave, employers are prohibited from firing employees who take leave for family or medical purposes. Lastly, an employer may not fire 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?
In Fairfield, California, a lawyer will be able to notify you about whether you are a victim of wrongful termination, and they will be able to guide you in gathering the necessary documents. Sometimes there can be procedures that are unique, and a lawyer can guide you in these as well.