Under what circumstances can I legally be fired?

Under the California Labor Code, most employment in California is considered to be “at will” unless an employment contract specifies the duration of employment. At-will employment means that either you or your employer can terminate the relationship without a reason. But there are some restrictions on the conditions under which your employer can fire you. For example, you cannot be terminated for reporting workplace harassment or illegal activity; refusing to engage in unlawful activity; or for choosing to join a labor union. Similarly, you cannot be fired if your termination was motivated by any type of discrimination, such as your age, gender, race, religion, or disability.

When is my employer required to pay me overtime?

Most employees in California are eligible to receive overtime pay when they work more than 8 hours in a single day or 40 hours in any 7-day period, with a few exceptions for professional, executive, and administrative employees.

Overtime is calculated as “time and a half,” or 1.5 times the worker’s normal hourly rate (1.5 × normal hourly rate). If, for example, you normally earn $15 per hour and work a 50-hour workweek, your overtime pay rate would be $22.50 per hour (1.5 × $15 = $22.50) for all hours you work over 40 hours. You would be entitled to $225 in overtime per week ($22.50 × 10). That would be $825 per week, rather than $750 ($15 × 50). If you are not getting overtime pay, your employer may be breaking the law!

Non-exempt employees who work more than 12 hours in any single day or more than 8 hours on the seventh consecutive day of a single week are entitled to receive “double time,” or double their hourly rate. If you are not getting overtime pay, your employer may be breaking the law!

Salaried employees may be entitled to overtime pay provided that their employment status is not “exempt”. Even if your employer has classified you as an “exempt” employee, you may be entitled to overtime if more than 50% of your time is spent on non-exempt duties. Our attorneys can review your case and determine if this situation applies to you.

What will it cost to hire an attorney?

In most cases, our lawyers work for you on a contingency-fee basis. The contingency fee is a fixed percentage of your recovery. Under this arrangement, you do not have to pay for legal services on an hourly basis, and your lawyer is only compensated if the case is won and there is a successful recovery.

We practice with the highest standards of integrity and work zealously with attention to detail, resulting in efficient and lucrative resolutions. If your employer has discriminated against you, harassed you, wrongfully terminated you, improperly paid or withheld wages from you, retaliated against you, or mistreated you, then contact the employment lawyers in Los Angeles at Chaleff Rehwald for immediate expert assistance. A lawyer from our team will discuss your options during a comprehensive and free case evaluation. Swift action will be taken on your behalf.

What is a whistleblower claim?

California and federal law protects those who “blow the whistle” by alerting management or state and federal authorities to illegal or unsafe conduct, fraudulent activity that harms the public, or other conduct that violates public policy. It is not uncommon for an employee to fear retaliation when considering whether to expose wrongdoing in the workplace. If you are anticipating reporting illegal activity in the workplace — or if you already have and are now experiencing retaliation in the form of harassment, demotion, pay cut, or even termination — an experienced San Fernando Valley employment lawyer from Chaleff Rehwald may be able to help you blow the whistle and protect your legal rights so you can do the right thing without fear of retaliation.

Why would I want to join a class action?

There is strength in numbers. Often, an individual has grounds to sue for a valid employment law claim but cannot because the monetary value of the claim is insufficient to justify the cost of a lawsuit. In such cases, it can be effective to band together with co-workers against the same employer or corporation through a “class action” representing all of the members of the group. The class action can generate sufficient compensation to cover the costs of litigation. Most importantly, by bringing the pressure of multiple legal claims together as a “class action,” the overall claim is more powerful.

On what grounds can I claim discrimination?

The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing publishes a list of the specific types of discrimination that are prohibited by law in this state. They include discrimination on the basis of age, race, color, ancestry, sexual orientation, gender, pregnancy, marital status, disability, national origin, medical condition, or religion, among others. If you believe that you have been passed over for a promotion, denied a raise, demoted, or even fired based on any of the above characteristics, you may have grounds to sue for discrimination.