Going through a conflict with your employer can be challenging. Unfortunately, many companies in California may violate employee rights implicating discrimination, unemployment, wages, and more. If this happens to you, it is critical to understand your legal rights and take action to protect your interests and freedoms. Speak to our Inland Empire employment attorney at Law Office of Joseph Richards, P.C., for a free consultation regarding potential legal advice.
If you work in California, you are the beneficiary of some of the country’s most protective worker rights laws. Federal law sets minimum standards for employee rights, but Californians enjoy additional rights and benefits related to discrimination, harassment, time off, and more. Important worker rights that every Californian enjoys include:
California has some of the most protective laws protecting you against employment discrimination. The Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) protects you from discrimination based on race, gender, disability, age (if you are over 40), and veteran status. FEHA rules against discrimination usually apply to companies with at least five employees. Speak to an employment attorney in the Inland Empire if you are not sure if this law applies to your company.
Additionally, you are protected against workplace discrimination by federal laws. However, the number of protected groups in these laws is narrower than in California. These laws include:
California employers also may not discriminate against you for being pregnant, giving birth, or having any related medical issues related to pregnancy. The law also bans employers from denying or interfering with your pregnancy-related rights in the workplace. Your employer also must do the following related to pregnancy:
Also, you may be entitled to leave under the California Family Rights Act of 1993 if you have been employed for more than 12 months for at least 1,250 hours before the day you want to take leave. Your leave can take up to 12 work weeks to give birth or adopt a child in one year. The law only mandates unpaid leave, but your employer may require you to use accrued paid leave when taking this leave of absence.
If you are hurt in California, your employer must pay for reasonably necessary medical care for illnesses and injuries related to your work. This is known as workers’ compensation. One of the benefits of California’s workers’ compensation laws is it does not matter who is at fault for the injury. Therefore, you may also be entitled to workers’ compensation regardless of your immigrant status.
Those who are hurt at work and who face discrimination or retaliation for filing a claim for workers’ comp may want to speak to an Inland Empire employment attorney.
California employers must pay employees what they are owed and offer meal and rest breaks. Withholding wages is wage theft, and you should speak to an employment attorney if that happens.
As of Jan. 1, 2023, the minimum wage in California is $15.50 per hour. Previously, the pay differed based on whether the company had 25 or fewer employees or 26 or more. Today, the wage is the same.
If you are paid by contract or day, your wages are equal to at least the minimum wage for all hours worked. Note that tips are separate, and your employer cannot count them as part of regular wages. However, a few types of workers do not have to get the minimum wage, including some sales professionals, camp counselors, and close members of the family.
Overtime must be paid at a rate of 1.5 times the regular wage. For most jobs, any hours over eight in a day or 40 in a week must be paid overtime. Also, if you work over 12 hours daily, you may be entitled to double time.
Your employer is required by law to keep workers safe on the job. Some of the safety and health requirements under California law are:
Furthermore, California and OSHA regulations state what California employers must do to protect employees from specific dangers. These regulations are listed in Title 8 of the California Code of Regulations and the State of California Department of Industrial Relations. Employers must follow these rules; if they do not, the state or OSHA can fine them.
All California workers need to know their employee rights in the workplace. If you think your rights have been violated at work regarding the protections mentioned in this article, you do not have to tolerate it. Speak to our Inland Empire employment attorney by calling to schedule an appointment for a free consultation today at Law Office of Joseph Richards, P.C. at (888) 883-6588.
Contact Us Today at to Schedule
A Free Initial Consultation
At Law Office of Joseph Richards, P.C., we are standing by, ready to get started with a free legal consultation for your potential employment law case. Individual workers deserve the same top-quality employment law representation that large corporations get from big law firms. Call the California employment lawyer at Law Office of Joseph Richards, P.C., today at (888) 883-6588 to arrange your strictly confidential initial consultation.