Many employers in California act with integrity when it comes to hiring and firing workers. However, there are some who may abuse the system to protect themselves from wrongful termination claims. While claiming to work within the law, some managers may be building their defense against a lawsuit long before they actually terminate an employee.
Some companies use shrewd methods to protect themselves from liability in case an employee they fire feels the dismissal was unjust. The first step may come during performance reviews. Some employers may include negative comments in every review so that an employee is unable to stand on his or her record as an exemplary worker. Even a positive review may include notations about areas that need improvement. These imperfections may become an easy defense against a wrongful termination suit.
Additionally, employers may document even the smallest infractions. If a state does not allow people access to their personnel files, employees may not know that these minor violations have been included until it is too late. Employers may also couch a discriminatory dismissal within a department restructuring by laying off other people of different races and genders to cover an illegal firing.
Not every employer uses these schemes to excuse an unjustified firing, and often layoffs cannot be avoided. However, sometimes a person is fired for reasons that are not legal or ethical. People in California who feel they are the victims of wrongful termination may benefit from contacting an attorney to review the details of the case and work to protect their rights.
Source: The Huffington Post, "No Angels In The Workplace", Rita C. Tobin, July 29, 2016