A job dismissal hurts on the professional and personal level. Whether you devoted decades, a few years or a few months to your role at your employer, a termination, a “RIF,” a “lay-off” or firing smarts. However, it really stings when your employer illegally terminated you.

In wrongful termination cases, you as an employee have the option for legal recourse in order to recover damages as well as seeing your former employer stuck with civil penalties that will make it think twice if it pursues another similar action. These situations may include retaliating against whistleblowers, discriminating based on gender, sexual orientation, age, or firing someone for filing for workers’ compensation.

Retaliatory and discriminatory reasons

In California, plaintiffs have several grounds for pursuing a lawsuit in wrongful termination cases. They may include:

  • Discriminatory reasons. This is list is wide and varied and may include discrimination based upon race, sex, gender, age, physical disability, religion, political affiliation as well as pregnancy.
  • Harassment and retaliatory reasons. This would include whistleblowers who report illegal activities, workers terminated for filing for workers’ compensation, workers who seek unpaid wages or overtime wages as well as workers filing complaints related to safety in the workplace.
  • Exercising your legal rights, including those through the Family Medical Leave Act. Such scenarios are related to medical and family leave for which you are legally guaranteed in order to recover from a serious medical ailment or to care for a newborn child.

Wrongful termination is illegal, and no worker deserves it. Take great care in recording and documenting every aspect of every incident that you have reported stemming from questionable activities and the behavior of your employer. If fired from your job, these actions will help you build your case in a wrongful termination lawsuit. And make sure to retain a skilled employment law attorney.