Unlawful Retaliation Attorneys for Los Angeles, Kern, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, and Ventura Counties

What is Unlawful Employment Retaliation?

In the simplest of terms, employer retaliation in California is an illegal act where employers take adverse actions against employees for engaging in legally protected activities.  There are many different state and federal laws which prohibit retaliation in California.  Since the purpose of each statutory scheme is unique, the phrase “protected activity” varies.  Here are some of the antiretaliation laws that apply to the workplace in California.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the California Fair Employment and Housing Act prohibit retaliation against employees who make a charge, testify, assist or participate in any manner in proceedings or hearings under the statutes (i.e. the Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the California Fair Employment and Housing Act ) (the “participation clause”); or oppose acts made unlawful by the statutes (the “opposition clause”).  So, for example an employee’s formal or informal complaint to a supervisor regarding unlawful discrimination is a “protected activity” and actions taken against the employee after such complaints may constitute retaliation. Indeed, the law even protect adverse action against employees who are prospective complainants or witnesses for complainants: It has been held that action taken against an individual in anticipation of that person engaging in protected opposition to discrimination is no less retaliatory than action taken after the fact. Similarly, both Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the California Fair Employment and Housing Act prohibit retaliation against an employee for opposing an employment practice made unlawful by the statute.

The California Whistleblower Statute protects employees who disclose reasonably based suspicions of illegal activity or noncompliance with rules or regulations either to a government or law enforcement agency or directly to another employee of the employer, so long as the employee to whom the report is made has authority over the disclosing employee or has authority to investigate, discover or correct the violation or noncompliance. The law protects employees from retaliation for disclosing unlawful activity to employers or agencies even if the recipient already knows about the unlawful activity.

Under California Health & Safety Code Section 1278.5 health care facilities may not discriminate or retaliate against any employee for presenting a grievance or complaint to an accrediting agency or other governmental entity, or for cooperating in an investigation or proceedings related to the quality of care, services or conditions at the facility.

California Labor Code Section 230(e) protects employees from being discharged or retaliated against due to their status as a victim of crime or abuse.

California Labor Code Section 6310 prohibits discrimination or retaliation against an employee who alleges an unsafe working condition.

The Sarbanes-Oxley Act prohibits an employer whose securities must be registered under federal securities laws (i.e., publicly-traded stocks or bonds) from discharging, discriminating against or retaliating against an employee for reporting employer conduct the employee “reasonably believes” violates federal securities, mail fraud, wire fraud or bank fraud laws or for assisting an SEC investigation.

Under Section 8 of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), employers are prohibited from retaliating against employees who exercise their right to concerted activity. This can include activities such as joining together to address conditions at work, with or without a union.

There are countless other laws which prohibit workplace retaliation, and these are but a few illustrations.

Why Contact an Employment Attorney in Los Angeles, Bakersfield, Orange, Oxnard, Riverside, or San Bernardino?

If you are in Southern California and feel that you have been the victim of unlawful employment termination, you are invited to contact the Akopyan Law Firm A.P.C. for a complimentary case evaluation.

Legal Expertise: Retaliation laws can be complex and vary from state to state. A lawyer who specializes in employment law will have the necessary knowledge and experience to navigate these complexities.

Case Evaluation: An attorney can help evaluate your situation, determine if you have a valid retaliation claim, and guide you on the best course of action.

Evidence Collection: A lawyer can guide you on how to properly document incidents of retaliation, collect evidence, and build a strong case.

Representation in Court: If your case goes to court, a lawyer can represent you, present your case effectively, and advocate on your behalf.

Negotiation Skills: Lawyers have negotiation skills that can be beneficial during settlement discussions. They can help ensure you receive fair compensation for any damages suffered due to retaliation.

Meeting Deadlines: There are specific time frames within which retaliation claims must be filed. Missing these deadlines can result in losing the right to pursue legal action. An attorney can ensure all necessary filings occur within the required time frames.

Remember, retaliation is illegal, and you have the right to seek justice. If you suspect you’re a victim of workplace retaliation, consult with an experienced employment lawyer as soon as possible.

Akopyan Law Firm A.P.C. – Representing the Victims of Illegal Retaliation

If you are experiencing workplace retaliation in Los Angeles, Bakersfield, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, or Ventura, contact Akopyan Law Firm, A.P.C.  We focus on employment law and have a strong track record of supporting victims of unfair employment practices.

One of the unique aspects of our firm is our commitment to personal attention. When you call for a consultation you will speak with an attorney, ensuring that your concerns are addressed by a knowledgeable professional. We offer a complimentary case evaluation, which is an excellent opportunity for you to discuss your situation with an experienced attorney without any upfront cost.

Contact us today at (818) 509-9975 to schedule a complimentary case evaluation.

Frequently Asked Questions About Workplace Retaliation in Los Angeles, Bakersfield, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, and Ventura

What is retaliation?

Both federal and state anti-discrimination statutes make it unlawful for an employer to retaliate against an employee who reports or opposes prohibited discrimination, harassment, or other unlawful conduct.

Can a potential employer violate the FEHA by retaliating against me even if I have not yet gotten the job?

Yes. Retaliation is prohibited against “any person” and this includes job applicants or former employees?

My supervisor has been targeting me since I complained about the harassment I was experiencing. Can I sue him personally for retaliation under the FEHA?

No. The FEHA only authorizes retaliation lawsuits against your employer, not your individual supervisor or co-workers. However, depending on your specific circumstances, your supervisor may be personally liable for harassment. Discuss your situation with our employment law attorneys.

My employer terminated me because I opposed its discriminatory policies. Do I have any rights under the FEHA? 

Yes, by refusing to obey a discriminatory order, you engaged in what is deemed a “protected activity” under the FEHA, even if you did not explicitly state your belief to the employer. Also, you do not need to prove that your employer’s practice which you opposed was, in fact, discriminatory. The opposition is protected as long as you had a “reasonable and good faith belief” that your employer’s practice was unlawful.

My employer demoted me and cut my pay three months after I complained that he had not paid me all of my wages. Do I have any rights?

Yes. Your employer cannot retaliate against you by taking what is called an “adverse employment action” against you because you engaged in a protected activity—such as complaining about not having been paid all of your wages. A demotion or pay cut is a “materially adverse employment action” that can subject your employer to a retaliation claim.

Featured Retaliation Accommodation Case

Yanowitz v. L’Oreal USA, Inc., 36 Cal. 4th 1028 (2005)

A former employee sued her employer for unlawful retaliation in violation of California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), negligent infliction of emotional distress, and other claims. The Superior Court, granted the employer’s motion for summary judgment. The Court of Appeal reversed. The Supreme Court granted the employer’s petition for review, and held that: The employee presented sufficient evidence that she was engaging in “protected activity” under FEHA.  The standard for determining whether employee was subjected to “adverse employment action” was whether employment action materially affected “terms and conditions of employment.” The continuing violation doctrine applied to limitations period for FEHA retaliation claims. The employee presented sufficient evidence of “adverse employment action” to support her claim of retaliation.  Genuine issue of material fact remained whether employer’s heightened response to employee’s allegedly poor performance was nonretaliatory.  The Court’s opinion stated in part as follows:  Employees often are legally unsophisticated and will not be in a position to make an informed judgment as to whether a particular practice or conduct actually violates the governing antidiscrimination statute. A rule that permits an employer to retaliate against an employee with impunity whenever the employee’s reasonable belief turns out to be incorrect would significantly deter employees from opposing conduct they believe to be discriminatory. As the United States Supreme Court recently emphasized in the context of title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (20 U.S.C. 1681 et seq.), “[r]eporting incidents of discrimination is integral to Title IX enforcement and would be discouraged if retaliation against those who report went unpunished. Indeed, if retaliation were not prohibited, Title IX’s enforcement scheme would unravel.” By the same token, a rule that would allow retaliation against an employee for opposing conduct the employee reasonably and in good faith believed was discriminatory, whenever the conduct subsequently was found not to violate the FEHA, would significantly discourage employees from opposing incidents of discrimination, thereby undermining the fundamental purposes of the antidiscrimination statutes.

Contact Us When You Need an Employment Law Attorney for Bakersfield, Los Angeles, Orange, Oxnard, Riverside, San Bernardino, and Ventura

Call us today at (818) 509-9975 or contact us online to schedule a complimentary case evaluation. We have extensive experience in all aspects of employment law, including retaliation cases.

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The litigation and trial attorneys of the Akopyan Law Firm, A.P.C. provide services throughout Southern California including but not limited to AdelantoAgoura HillsAlhambraAliso ViejoAltadenaAnaheimApple ValleyArcadiaArletaAtwater VillageAzuzaBakersfieldBaldwin ParkBanningBeaumontBellBell GardensBellflowerBeverly HillsBlytheBoyle HeightsBreaBrentwoodBuena ParkBurbankCalabasasCalimesaCamarilloCanoga ParkCanyon LakeCarsonCathedral CityCerritosChatsworthChino HillsChinoClaremontCoachellaColtonComptonCosta MesaCoronaCovinaCulver CityCypressDana PointDesert Hot SpringsDiamond BarDowneyDuarteEagle RockEast HollywoodEast Los AngelesEastvaleEcho ParkEl MonteEl SegundoEl SerenoEncinoFontanaFountain ValleyFullertonGardenaGarden GroveGlassell ParkGlendaleGlendoraGranada HillsHacienda HeightsHawthorneHemetHesperiaHighland ParkHighlandHollywoodHollywood HillsHuntington BeachHuntington ParkIndian WellsIndioInglewoodIrvineJurupa ValleyLa Canada FlintridgeLa-Crescenta MontroseLa HabraLa MiradaLa PalmaLa PuenteLa QuintaLa VerneLaguna BeachLaguna HillsLaguna NiguelLaguna WoodsLakewoodLake BalboaLake ElsinoreLake ForestLancasterLawndaleLincoln HeightsLoma LindaLong BeachLos AlamitosLos AngelesLos FelizLynwoodManhattan BeachMar VistaMaywoodMenifeeMission HillsMission ViejoMonroviaMontclairMontebelloMonterey ParkMoorparkMoreno ValleyMurrietaNewbury ParkNewhallNewport BeachNorcoNorth HillsNorth HollywoodNorthridgeNorwalkOntarioOrangeOxnardPacific PalisadesPacoimaPalos VerdesPalmdalePalm DesertPalm SpringsPanorama CityParamountPasadenaPerrisPico RiveraPlacentiaPomonaPorter RanchRancho CucamongaRancho MirageRancho Santa MargaritaRedondo BeachResedaRialtoRiversideRosemeadRowland HeightsSan BernardinoSan ClementeSan DimasSan GabrielSan FernandoSan JacintoSan Juan CapistranoSan PedroSanta AnaSanta ClaritaSanta MonicaSawtelleSeal BeachShadow HillsSherman OaksSilver LakeSimi ValleySouth El MonteSouth GateSouth PasadenaSouth WhittierStantonStudio CitySun ValleySunlandSylmarTarzanaTemeculaTemple CityThousand OaksToluca LakeTorranceTujungaTustinTwentynine PalmsUplandValenciaValley GlenValley VillageVan NuysVenturaVictorvilleWalnutWest CovinaWest HillsWest HollywoodWest Puente ValleyWestchesterWestminsterWestwoodWhittierWildomarWinnetkaWoodland HillsYorba Linda