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 crucial that you identify what type of employment arrangement you are involved in. Usually, 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 a California at-will employment, discrimination is the most common illegal ground for terminating an employee. Termination by an employer cannot be done on the basis of race, nationality, gender, or religion. A Kern County 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, the Family and Medical leave act prohibits employers from firing employees for having taken leave for family or medical reasons. Lastly, employees are protected from being fired by their employer for performing a legal obligation, exercising their legal rights, or for refusing to participate in an illegal act.
Do I Need a California Attorney for My Wrongful Termination Case?
Attorneys in Kern County, 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.