5 Important Employment Law Rights Every California Employee Should Know About

Jul 1, 2022
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5 Important Employment Law Rights Every California Employee Should Know About

5 Important Employment Law Rights Every California Employee Should Know About

As an employee in California, it is important to know your rights under state and federal law. Here are five employment law rights that every California employee should be aware of:

1. What are the laws governing overtime pay?

In California, employees are entitled to 1.5 times their regular pay for any hours worked over 8 in a day or 40 in a week, with some exceptions. Federal law requires overtime pay for hours worked over 40 in a week, but does not have daily overtime provisions.

2. Do I have the right to take time off for a family emergency?

In California, employees are entitled to unpaid protected leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) for certain qualifying events, including the birth or adoption of a child, the serious illness of a family member, or the employee’s own serious health condition. Employees may also be entitled to paid leave under the California Family Rights Act (CFRA) if they work for a covered employer.

3. What are the laws regarding pregnancy and childbirth leave?

In California, employees are entitled to up to four months of unpaid protected leave under the Pregnancy Disability Leave Law for a disability related to pregnancy or childbirth. Employees who have worked for their employer for at least one year may also be entitled to up to six weeks of paid leave under the California Family Rights Act (CFRA) for the birth or adoption of a child.

4. Do I have the right to take time off for jury duty?

In California, employees are entitled to take time off for jury duty without suffering any adverse employment consequences. Employers are prohibited from terminating, disciplining, or otherwise penalizing employees for taking time off to serve on a jury. However, employers are not required to pay employees for their time spent on jury duty. Employees who are called to serve on a jury may be entitled to receive jury duty pay from the state or federal government.

5. What are the laws regarding workplace discrimination?

In California, the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) prohibits employers from discriminating against employees on the basis of certain protected characteristics, including race, color, religion, sex, pregnancy, national origin, disability, age, or sexual orientation. Employees who believe they have been the victim of workplace discrimination may file a complaint with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH). Complaints can also be filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

Employers are also required to provide reasonable accommodations for employees with disabilities, unless doing so would impose an undue hardship on the employer. Reasonable accommodations may include changes to work schedules, assignment of tasks, or modifications to the workplace itself. Employees who require a reasonable accommodation should request one from their employer in writing.

Employers are also prohibited from retaliating against employees who complain about discrimination or participate in an investigation of discrimination. Retaliation can take many forms, including termination, demotion, or reduction in pay or hours. If you believe you have been the victim of workplace discrimination or retaliation, you should contact an experienced employment law attorney.

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