If you’re questioning whether your boss can fire you at any time for any reason, the answer in most cases is “yes”. California is an at-will state which means your employer can fire you at any time for almost any reason or absolutely no reason at all. So whether you looked out the window or they just happen to be in a bad mood, you could be fired.
Now that doesn’t mean there aren’t exceptions to every rule. In a California Supreme Court case, there was an overwhelming decision “Even where employment is at will, numerous federal and state statutes already impose express limitations on the right of an employer to discharge at will.” [Foley v. Interactive Data Corp., 47 Cal.3d 654, 665, fn. 4.]
If you have a contract, employee handbook, union agreement, or other binding agreement, you should carefully examine it for your employer’s termination policy. Some agreements might have an exception that prevents your boss from firing you unless “for cause” or good reason.
Employees also have protection from illegally being fired which include discrimination, retaliation for whistleblowing, jury duty, voting, taking family medical leave, applying for workers’ compensation, union activity, participating in an investigation for discrimination or harassment, and more.
If you feel you’ve been a victim of wrongful termination, contact The Law Office of Gary M. Tetalman right away.