Whether you’re an employee or employer in California, it’s always wise to have the phone number for an employment attorney in your back pocket. California is known for having some of the strongest labor protection laws in the entire country. If you’re an employee, that means that you have legal options when your rights are violated. If you’re an employer, that means you should be running major decisions past an attorney before you put them into an action—lest you incur heavy penalties and fines.
Looking for the right Orange County employment lawyer for your case? Let us help. Browse our list of local lawyers and reach out to those that catch your eye.
Helpful Information About Choosing an Orange County Employment Lawyer
- You can research the Bar license status, suspensions or reprimands of an attorney at the California Bar Association website.
- The California Bar Association does not have a “Specialty” certification for employment law like some other areas of practice, but many employment attorneys tend to focus on this area of law because of the nuance and complexity of employment claim matters in California.
- Some attorneys will be able to meet with you at their office or over Zoom. It’s important to ask when you call.
Workers’ Rights in California
California law offers significant protections to employees. Employees should stay informed of their rights and employers should ensure that their practices and protocols do not violate them. California law provides these and other rights:
- Minimum shifts: Employees who work eight-hour shifts must be paid for at least four hours if their employer sends them home early.
- Proper classification: California charges significant fines for employers who misclassify their employees as independent contractors.
- Overtime: Standard overtime pays 1.5 times an employee’s regular pay. When an employee works more than 12 hours in a day, they are entitled to two times their regular pay.
- Vacation pay: Paid time off in California is not allowed to expire, and an employee who quits or gets fired must have that time paid out to them.
- Layoff notification: Employers who lay off 50 or more employees in one month, close their location, or relocate must give employees 60 days of notice. Workers who are not given this notice are entitled to receive 60 days of pay and benefits.
- Final paycheck: An employee who quits must receive their last paycheck within 72 hours of quitting. A fired employee must receive their last paycheck the same day they are fired.
- Warehouse quota transparency: Employees must receive written information on each quota they are expected to meet, and quotas cannot force employees to skip restroom breaks or work unsafely.
- Pay transparency: Employees cannot be forbidden from discussing pay.
Orange County Employment Lawyers:
Navigating Workplace Disputes
When a dispute arises between an employee and their employer, human resources is often the first stop. Depending on the nature of the disagreement and the general work environment, the employee might choose to go straight to an attorney. Human resources departments are there to protect companies, not employees. While that often means preventing companies from taking illegal steps to violate employees’ rights, it may also mean firing employees who routinely stand up for themselves. Talking to an attorney can help employees assert their rights while protecting their employment.
Common Employment Claims
Common employment violation claims often involve abuses of power from the employer or a Supervisor or Manager. Here are some common employment violation claims that attorneys handle regularly:
- Unlawful termination: This claim arises when an employee believes they were wrongfully fired, such as in cases of discrimination, retaliation for exercising legal rights, or breach of employment contract.
- Discrimination: Employees may claim discrimination based on protected characteristics, such as race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, or genetic information. This includes discriminatory practices in hiring, promotions, compensation, or termination.
- Harassment: Employees can assert claims of workplace harassment, including sexual harassment, which creates a hostile work environment and negatively affects their employment conditions.
- Wage and hour violations: These claims involve violations of minimum wage laws, unpaid hours or overtime, failure to provide meal and rest breaks, misclassification of employees as independent contractors, or illegal wage deductions.
- Failure to pay benefits: Employers may be held accountable for failing to provide legally mandated benefits such as health insurance, retirement plans, or vacation and sick leave.
- Retaliation: This claim arises when an employer takes adverse action against an employee in response to their protected activities, such as filing a complaint, participating in an investigation, or advocating for workplace rights.
- Violations of family and medical leave laws: Employees can assert claims when an employer interferes with their rights under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) or similar state laws, such as denying leave or retaliating against an employee for taking leave.
- Breach of contract: Employees may allege that their employer breached an employment contract by failing to fulfill promised terms, such as compensation, benefits, job duties, or length of employment.
- Whistleblower claims: These claims involve employees reporting illegal or unethical activities within the company and subsequently facing retaliation for their disclosures.
- Violation of workplace safety regulations: Employees can assert claims if their employer fails to provide a safe and healthy work environment or violates occupational health and safety standards.
It’s critical to consult with a local Orange County employment attorney to provide accurate and up-to-date information and a specific plan of action for your matter.
Employment Lawyers Near Me:
20321 SW Birch St. Suite 200 Newport Beach, CA 92660
5020, Campus Drive Newport Beach, CA 92660
206 W. 4th St. Santa Ana, California 92701
12900 Garden Grove Blvd #132, Garden Grove, CA 92843
An Orange County Employment Attorney Can Protect Employers Against Unfair Claims
Employers also benefit from the services of an Orange County employment lawyer. If an employee has alleged that a company has broken California law, the employer should talk to an attorney right away. There are so many employment laws in California that it’s easy for a well-intentioned employer to break them. By pairing up with a lawyer, an employer can stay on the right side of the law and protect their business.
If you’re ready to find an employment lawyer in Orange County, use our list of local attorneys to get started.