Employee Rights No Fees Unless We Win
Five Steps to Take After You Are Terminated From Your Job
Whether your employer says you are being terminated, fired, let go, laid off, dismissed, or discharged, being terminated from your job can be a highly stressful and traumatizing experience. This is especially the case when you are unexpectedly and unlawfully terminated from your job. Losing your job may make you feel as though you have lost an essential part of your identity. Losing your job unexpectedly may put you in financial straits. You may not have enough money to pay your bills, or pay rent. Losing your job is a serious matter.
The California legislature has long recognized the societal importance of employment. California law provides broader protections for workers than federal law and the laws of most other states. In California, many terminations that would be considered lawful elsewhere are unlawful here. As a California worker, you have the right not to be punished for being who you are or for complaining of unlawful or unfair conduct.
Listed below are five steps you should take after being terminated from your job if you feel the termination was unfair, unjust, or unlawful.
1.Read up on California employment law. Understanding your rights as a worker in California and speaking up for yourself can help ensure that your employer treats you fairly. In the event that your employer does not treat you fairly and instead wrongfully terminates your employment, you will understand what your rights are and how to proceed. Abundant information concerning your rights as a California worker is available here on the Kokozian Law Firm, APC website.
2.Gather All Relevant Documentation. Collect all documents related to your employment. This may include new hire documentation, pay stubs, clock-in and clock-out records, and correspondence, such as emails sent between you and your employer, as well as letters or memos you received from your employer. Gather any texts messages you sent or received from supervisors. coworkers, or Human Resources. Assemble any performance reviews or disciplinary notices. If the circumstances that led to your termination involve time off from work due to an illness, injury, or disability, gather all documentation sent between you and your employer and any third party leave administrator or leave management company. If you believe you were wrongfully terminated, these documents may be a valuable resource of crucial evidence.
3.File for Unemployment Benefits. If you were laid off or terminated from your job through no fault of your own, you are likely eligible for unemployment benefits. Do not let the fact that your employer is falsely claiming that you were terminated “for cause” dissuade you from seeking benefits. Your eligibility and the amount of benefits you will be entitled to depend on your earnings over the previous 18 months. To receive unemployment benefits, you must also represent that you are physically able to work and are available to work. You must have been an employee or misclassified as an independent contractor to receive unemployment benefits. (In situations where the law recognizes you as an employee, but your employer has classified you as an independent contractor, so it does not have to pay minimum wage, overtime, payroll taxes, or provide mandated meal and rest periods, you have been misclassified.)
Additional Advice on Filing for Unemployment Benefits
File for unemployment benefits promptly, as the process can take several weeks. Visit the State of California, Employment Development Department (EDD) website for details on how to apply for Unemployment Insurance Benefits. You have done nothing wrong. Rather, your employer broke the law by wrongfully terminating your employment. Your hard work ensured that you had an income. Now that your employer has taken that income away by wrongfully terminating your employment, take advantage of an enduring benefit of your hard work by securing unemployment benefits until you find a new job.
4. Consider Pursuing A Potential Wrongful Termination Claim. Wrongful termination takes many forms. Your employer may have discriminated against you and wrongfully terminated your employment because you had a disability, because you were pregnant, or because of your race, sexual orientation, national origin, age or other personal characteristic protected under the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), California Government Code sections 12900 – 12996. Your employer may have retaliated against you and wrongfully terminated your employment because you complained of sexual harassment, unsafe working conditions, or unlawful business practices such as not being paid properly or not receiving meal or rest periods to which you are entitled. California laws such as FEHA and various sections of the California Labor Code protect you from wrongful termination and provide for compensation if your employer violates your rights. Carefully review the circumstances of your termination. Does the sequence of events leading up to the end of your employment suggest that you were wrongfully terminated? Did your employer give you a legitimate reason for your termination? Was there an actual legitimate reason for you being fired or was the reason given for your termination a legitimate reason in name only aimed at covering up the fact that you were terminated for an unlawful reason? If you feel that your termination was unfair, unjust, unlawful, or discriminatory, you should consult with a legal expert.
5. Contact an employment law firm. The final step is to seek legal advice from an experienced employment attorney such as the experienced employment attorneys at Kokozian Law Firm. We can help you better understand your rights and the potential remedies for being wrongfully terminated. Kokozian Law Firm offers skilled guidance to individuals we represent. Our practice focuses on representing workers who have been fired, discriminated or retaliated against or who have not received proper pay or meal or rest breaks or other mandatory benefits of employment. Conclusion Being fired is a challenging experience in the best of circumstances, and a wrongful termination can be particularly hard on you and your loved ones. But you do not have to go it alone. With a mindful approach to your situation and the right employment attorney, you have the best chance of successfully asserting your legal rights and getting what you deserve. The dedicated attorneys at Kokozian Law Firm are here to help you. Reach out to us today.Contact Us
If you believe you were wrongfully terminated, or if you believe your employer or former employer otherwise violated your rights, call the experienced employment attorneys at Kokozian Law Firm, APC at 800-786-6562 or Contact Us via our online form. We advance all costs. No recovery, no fee.