California Wrongful Termination: Employment Rights

Wrongfully Terminated in California: Know Your Rights

If you believe you have been wrongfully terminated from your job in California, you have legal avenues to explore. Wrongful termination lawsuits can be intricate, requiring solid evidence that your employer terminated you for an illegal reason such as discrimination or retaliation. However, with the assistance of an experienced wrongful termination attorney, you can protect your rights and seek justice and compensation.

Understanding Wrongful Termination

Wrongful termination occurs when an employer fires an employee for an unlawful reason. This can include discrimination based on age, race, gender, disability, religion, or sexual orientation. Additionally, if an employer retaliates against an employee for engaging in protected activities, such as reporting illegal conduct or whistleblowing, this too constitutes wrongful termination.

California Laws Protecting Employees

In California, specific laws like the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) and the California Labor Code protect employees from wrongful termination. These laws prohibit workplace discrimination and retaliation, providing legal options for employees who have been unlawfully terminated.

Grounds for Wrongful Termination

Wrongful termination can occur if an employer fires an employee for:

  • Reporting illegal conduct
  • Refusing to engage in illegal activity
  • Requesting reasonable accommodations for a disability
  • Discriminatory reasons based on age, race, gender, disability, religion, or sexual orientation

Legal Options for Wrongful Termination

If you have been unlawfully terminated in California, you may pursue several legal options, including:

  • Filing a wrongful termination lawsuit against your employer
  • Lodging a discrimination or retaliation complaint with state or federal agencies
  • Engaging in mediation or settlement negotiations for compensation

Potential Compensation

Successful wrongful termination claims can result in compensation for:

  • Lost past and future wages
  • Lost benefits
  • Emotional distress damages
  • Punitive damages in severe cases

Workers’ Compensation for Work-Related Injuries

If you suffered a work-related injury or illness before being wrongfully terminated, you might qualify for workers’ compensation benefits. These benefits can cover:

  • Medical expenses
  • Temporary or permanent disability payments
  • Lost wages

Seeking Legal Assistance

Being unlawfully terminated can be devastating. It is crucial to understand your rights as an employee. An experienced California employment law attorney can review your situation, explain your options, and advocate for the compensation you deserve.

At-Will Employment and Wrongful Termination

California follows the “at-will” employment doctrine, meaning employers can generally terminate employees for any reason or no reason at all, as long as it’s not unlawful. However, there are exceptions to this rule that provide protection against wrongful termination.


If you have been wrongfully terminated in California, it’s essential to know your rights and legal options.

wrongful termination in California