Although most employees don’t realize it, an employee in California can be fired at any time for any reason (or no reason). An employee under this scheme is “at will” as s/he can be fired at the will of the employer. Although this may be unfair and unprofessional, it is perfectly legal.

There are some exceptions to this rule. For example, an employee cannot be fired if s/he has an employment contract for a period of time, like a professional athlete may have a contract to play for three years. Also, an employer cannot take a negative job action (like demotion, termination, or cut in hours) because of the employee’s race, gender, sexual orientation, age, disability, or religion. An employer cannot retaliate against an employee for that employee’s exercise of rights (like for making a workers’ compensation claim).

But the vast majority of times, an employer has the right to fire an employee. Some common examples of a legal basis for termination include: a personality conflict, poor performance (true or untrue), favoritism, and financial reasons.

Lafayette, California, Employment Law Attorney John Furstenthal represents clients in the cities of Walnut Creek, Concord, and surrounding East Bay Area communities who have employment legal matters. If you have been unlawfully fired or terminated from your job, and you wish to speak with an experienced employment lawyer, please contact the Furstenthal Law Office today at (925) 284-1718 or fill out our online form.