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. In general, employment that is subject to a set period employment contract is not considered to be "at will", and termination can only happen in accordance with procedures outlined 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. San Mateo County employers are further prohibited from firing at-will employees in order to retaliate against them for filing a legal discrimination claim or initiating an investigation of discrimination.
Additionally, employers are prohibited by the Family and Medical Leave act from firing those employees who take leave in order to address family or medical concerns. 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?
Local San Mateo County, California lawyers can properly inform you regarding whether a wrongful termination has in fact occurred. They can also help you gather the necessary documents for your case, and can guide you through any procedures that may be unique or unfamiliar.