As with many other jurisdictions across the US, California is an at-will employment state. Generally, this means that employers can let go of workers without providing them with a reason. This can also provide employees with a little more flexibility in terms of moving from one job to another.
There are some exceptions to the rule, however. Employees cannot be dismissed unfairly, as this constitutes wrongful termination. Outlined below are some of the more common scenarios where this can happen.
There is no moral justification for discrimination of any kind, and there is also no legal justification for this in California. If you have been dismissed because of your skin color, religion, age, gender, or any other protected characteristic, then this constitutes wrongful termination.
For filing a workers’ comp claim
If you have been injured on the job, then you may be eligible for some financial compensation. Employers sometimes don’t appreciate workplace injuries coming to light, especially if they have not been adhering to health and safety standards. You may be dismissed in an attempt to shut down your claim and any further investigations that come with it. This is known as workers’ comp retaliation and it is unlawful. You cannot be fired for making a valid workplace injury claim.
At-will employment does not mean you can be wrongfully terminated. You have a host of legal options and rights as a worker in California. To explore these options and assert your rights, it’s probably best that you reach out to someone with experience in the field of employment law.