What Type of Employee Complaints are Protected from Retaliation in the California Workplace?
At E&L, LLP, our retaliation attorneys provide straightforward legal advice for employees throughout California, so they completely understand their rights and when they pursue legal remedies after they have been violated. Retaliation often occurs against employees who make discrimination claims against any member in any protected class, which includes:
Our state and federal retaliation laws also protect employees who complained about harassment or a hostile work environment, so they can report unlawful activity of any type in the workplace without fearing negative repercussions.
If your employer took any adverse action against you for making or participating in a claim of discrimination or harassment, you may be entitled to pursue a civil claim against the company. Employees are protected from retaliation even if employment discrimination cannot be proven, so long as they have a reasonable belief that it occurred. Employees are not protected from retaliation if they are not reporting unlawful conduct.
What are the Most Common Employment Discrimination Activities that are Protection by Our Retaliation Laws?
There are many protected activities covered by employment discrimination laws.
- Answering an investigator’s questions about employment discrimination
- Filing a discrimination complaint with a state or federal agency
- Filing a discrimination lawsuit in court
- Looking into wage discrimination by asking co-workers about their salaries
- Making a verbal or written complaint of discrimination or harassment to an employer, whether they are reported to a supervisor or human resources
- Refusing an employer’s request to discriminate against an employee
- Resisting or rejecting unwelcome sexual advances
- Testifying as a witness in an employment discrimination proceeding
There are different layers of protection for employees that state that an employer cannot retaliate against an employee simply because the employee makes certain requests to accommodate illnesses, disabilities, and even religious practices.
Employers may not retaliate against employees who request:
- Accommodation of a disability under the Americans with Disabilities Actor under state law
- Accommodation of pregnancy under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act or under state law
- Accommodation of religious practice under Title VII of the Civil Rights Actor under state law
- Medical leave under the Family and Medical Leave Actor the California Family Rights Act
As a California employee, you have rights. If you believe they are being violated at any time or are sure you have been retaliated against after reporting unlawful activity in the workplace, contact our skilled employment law attorneys to learn how you can hold your employer accountable for violating our state and/or federal employment laws.
What Type of Behavior is Unlawful Retaliation in the California Workplace?
Retaliation is defined as any adverse action taken against an employee for complaining about — or supporting another employee’s complaint about unlawful behavior in the workplace that violates local, state, or federal discrimination or harassment laws.
The most common adverse actions classified as retaliation include:
- Assigning the employee to a less desirable location or shift
- Giving the employee an unfair performance evaluation
- Harassing the employee
- Making unreasonable demands upon the employee
- Reducing the employee’s hours or pay
- Subjecting the employee’s work to a higher level of scrutiny
- Terminating the employee
Not all acts of retaliation are obvious, so it is important to know that even a threat — no matter how thinly veiled — to take adverse action against the employee is still retaliation.
If you believe you have been retaliated against for reporting illegal behavior in the workplace, contact our skilled employment law attorneys at E&L, LLP today to schedule a free consultation to learn more about your legal rights and options to pursue the proper remedy for your unique damages.
Contact Us Today
Reporting unlawful behavior, including discrimination and harassment in the workplace is a protected right as an employee in California. If you have been retaliated against for reporting any type of protected membership, contact our employment law attorneys at E&L, LLP today by calling (213) 213-0000 to schedule a free case evaluation and consultation.
You don’t pay until we win! That’s our guarantee.