What You Should Know About Whistleblower Retaliation in California

benjamin-child-90768-300x200Many employees are afraid to report their employer’s illegal conduct in fear that they will be terminated or punished in some way. However, California law prohibits whistleblower retaliation against an employee and offers restitution for those who have been victims of whistleblower retaliation. If you have been the victim of whistleblower retaliation in California, contact our experienced San Francisco whistleblower attorneys at (800) 427-7020 immediately for your free case evaluation.

What is Whistleblower Retaliation?

Whistleblower retaliation in the workplace can look similar to other forms of workplace retaliation. However, whistleblower retaliation refers specifically to retaliation against employees in response to employees’ reporting of his or her employer’s illegal actions or improper conduct. Whistleblower retaliation can take the form of wrongful termination, demotion, denial of resources and training, negative performance reviews, increase in work hours, and more. California whistleblower laws extend these protections to contractors and agents in addition to employees.

Which Types of Whistleblower Actions are Protected in California?

Whistleblower actions that are protected in California include the following:

  • Refusing to engage in illegal conduct at work
  • Reporting fraud or falsification of financial documents
  • Reporting deceptive business practices
  • Reporting violations of health or safety codes
  • Reporting other illegal conduct at work

If you have experienced workplace retaliation after engaging in one of the above whistleblower actions, contact a Brod Law Firm attorney immediately for a free case review.

How to File a Whistleblower Retaliation Complaint in California

Once you and your attorney have determined that you were the subject of whistleblower retaliation after engaging in one of the above protected actions, your attorney will help you decide how best to proceed. Depending on which type of employee you are and which type of whistleblower retaliation your employer engaged in, you may be required to first file a complaint with the California Labor Commissioner or the California State Personnel Board before filing a lawsuit against your employer. You typically have six months to file a complaint with the California Labor Commissioner, 12 months to file a complaint with the California State Personnel Board, or three years to file a lawsuit against your employer. Your experienced California whistleblower attorney will be able to guide you through the process, advise you accordingly, and ensure you are meeting all the deadlines.

What Damages can I Recover From My Employer?

The damages you may be able to recover from your employer vary depending on the facts of your specific case. Generally, damages may include lost wages and benefits, emotional distress, pain and suffering, attorney’s fees, and even punitive damages if your employer is found to have engaged in oppression, fraud, or malice. Damages may also come in the form of reinstating you at your previous position, if you were found to have been wrongfully terminated.

If you believe you may have been the subject of whistleblower retaliation, call us for help today. The whistleblower attorneys at Brod Law Firm have helped victims of whistleblower retaliation obtain full recoveries for their employers’ retaliation against them for performing actions protected by California law. Contact us today at (800) 427-7020 or visit us online to schedule your free case review.

(image courtesy of Benjamin Child)