California Employment Discrimination

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Employment Discrimination Attorney

Representing Victims of Employment Discrimination throughout California

It is illegal for employers to make employment decisions for discriminatory reasons. You cannot be fired, retaliated against, or treated differently because you belong to a protected class defined in California or federal law. Sadly, discrimination in the workplace remains a serious and pervasive problem. 

If you are a California employee who has experienced any type of discriminatory treatment, do not wait to get in touch with our team at Bennett Legal Services. You only have a limited window of time to file a complaint against your employer, and our employment discrimination lawyer can support you throughout each step of the process. We have 35 years of experience and know how to effectively advocate for employees in administrative proceedings as well as state and federal courts. Our firm is committed to helping employees fight injustice, and we will leverage our knowledge and skill to pursue the relief and compensation you deserve. 

Discuss your case in a free initial consultation by calling (888) 807-5755 or contacting us online. Flexible payment options are available. 

What Is Considered Employment Discrimination in California?

Title VII of the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964 extends anti-discrimination protections to employees throughout the United States. California law expands these protections to include more protected classes. 

In California, your employer cannot discriminate against you because of your:

  • Race
  • Color
  • National origin
  • Religion
  • Sex
  • Sexual orientation
  • Gender identity
  • Genetic information
  • Marital status
  • Pregnancy status
  • Disability
  • Medical condition
  • AIDS/HIV-positive status
  • Age (if 40 or over)
  • Status as a victim of stalking or domestic violence
  • Political beliefs or activities

Discrimination can take place both in the workplace and during recruitment processes. Some types of employment discrimination will be extremely obvious, while others may be more difficult to detect.

Examples of hiring discrimination include discriminatory language in job advertisements and asking discriminatory questions in interviews. In a grand majority of cases, a job posting should never exclude or prioritize members of a protected class. Interview questions should focus on a candidate’s qualifications for the job: They should not probe irrelevant personal information, like a person’s perceived disability, religious beliefs, or political affiliations.

If you notice a discriminatory job advertisement or are asked discriminatory questions in an interview and are then not hired, you may be the victim of hiring discrimination. Employers cannot make hiring decisions based on someone’s belonging to a protected class. 

Hostile work environments are considered a form of discrimination. You may be the victim of a hostile work environment if unwanted comments, jokes, or other types of abuse target your membership in a protected class and make it harder for you to do your job. For example, if you are over the age of 40 and your coworkers consistently make fun of you for being “slow,” you are likely experiencing a hostile work environment. 

You can hold your employer accountable for hostile work environments even if your direct boss or supervisor is not the ones acting inappropriately. Your employer is legally responsible for maintaining a discrimination-free working environment. 

Your employer cannot make any employment-related decisions on discriminatory grounds, meaning they cannot:

  • Fire you
  • Lay you off
  • Demote you
  • Pay you less
  • Refuse to promote you
  • Deny you opportunities offered to other employees 
  • Take any other adverse action against you

In other words, you cannot be punished or treated adversely because you belong to a protected class. For example, an employer cannot decide to lay you off because other employees are uncomfortable with your religious beliefs. 

Your employer also cannot retaliate against you for complaining about or reporting discriminatory treatment. If you were fired, demoted, or punished for speaking out, our employment discrimination attorney can help you explore your legal options.

Failure to Provide Reasonable Accommodations

Employees with disabilities (including pregnancy) and religious beliefs have the right to request reasonable accommodations during the hiring process and in the workplace. Employers are legally required to make every effort to accommodate these requests, which should make it easier for you to do a job you are qualified for. Common reasonable accommodations include equipment adjustments, flexible working schedules, and closer parking spaces. 

Employers cannot refuse to consider a reasonable accommodation, and they can only reject one if it represents an “undue hardship.” You may have legal recourse if your employer is unlawfully claiming your perfectly reasonable accommodation request is an undue hardship, as failing to provide a reasonable accommodation is considered discrimination under the law. 

Dealing with Discrimination? Take Action Today.

Employers will rarely be forthright about why they are making a discriminatory employment-related decision and will typically invent another reason to justify their actions. That does not mean you should not stand up for your rights. Our employment discrimination lawyer knows how to strategically approach these cases and can help you build your claim. Before you can pursue private legal action, you will need to file a formal complaint with the EEOC or DFEH. Our team at Bennett Legal Services can answer your questions and assist you throughout this process. 

You do not have to fight employment discrimination alone. Contact us online or call (888) 807-5755 to get started on your claim.

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