Every day, numerous California residents are fired from their jobs. For some, this is done with good reason. For others, wrongful termination may be suspected. When it is, victims may seek relief through legal means.

The simple truth of the matter is, not all firings are illegal. The majority of the workforce in the United States are at-will employees. This means that these individuals can be fired whenever, even if there seems no reason for it. Those who have employment contracts may also be fired, as long as their layoffs are done according to the terms offered in their contracts.

Federal laws are in place to protect people from being fired based on some sort of discrimination. For example, it is illegal for an employer to lay off employees based on their gender. Employers are also not allowed to discriminate based on:

  • Race
  • Disability
  • Pregnancy
  • Religion
  • Age

When fired from a job, it is okay to ask why. Those who believe that they are victims of wrongful termination may be able to file legal claims against their employers in an effort to seek monetary relief and/or the reinstatement of their previous positions, if desired — among other things. Those interested in doing this generally have to file claims with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission first. The EEOC will then investigate and, if appropriate, pursue legal claims of its own.

An experienced California-based employment law attorney can review the details of one’s case and help one determine if legal actions are appropriate. In order to proceed, there has to be sufficient cause, and the statute of limitations cannot have passed. If moving forward with a wrongful termination claim makes sense, it can ultimately be resolved through out-of-court negotiations or, if necessary, litigation.