Protecting your rights in the workplace.

Employment Litigation Overview

Discuss Your Situation With Our Employment Lawyers

Federal and California laws highly regulate the relationship between the employer and employee. This is becoming more so with the passage of new laws. At Yadegar, Minoofar & Soleymani LLP (YMS), our Los Angeles employment lawyers understand that workplace disputes can be devastating. The law entitles you to a work environment that is free from harassment and discrimination.

Our goal is to thoroughly understand the issues and the dynamics of our clients’ unique situations to help them resolve their employment issues. We have helped many employees who have been the unfortunate victims of workplace harassment, discrimination or illegal workplace policies. We may be able to help you too.

Cases Our Attorneys Handle

While you may believe an employment practice is wrong, it may not be illegal. Many state and federal laws protect employees in the United States, and these laws determine whether an employment practice is illegal.

There are several terms the law uses to describe illegal employment practices, including:

  • Harassment
  • Discrimination
  • Hostile work environment
  • Retaliation.

These terms have specific definitions, missions, and meanings under the law, and not every incident of harassment, discrimination, hostile work environment, or retaliation is illegal.

For the most part, an employment practice is only illegal or against the law if the action is based on an employee’s membership in a protected class; or in response to a complaint that the employee made about treatment based on their membership in a protected class.

For example, being harassed or treated differently because your boss simply doesn’t like you, or because they think you are lazy is not an example of an illegal employment practice, unless you are being treated differently because of your membership in a protected class.

Furthermore, it is not an example of illegal retaliation unless you are being treated differently because you reported or filed a complaint about you or someone else being harassed or discriminated against in your workplace based on membership in a protected class.

Our Los Angeles employment attorneys handle many types of employment law cases, including:

Workplace Harassment

Workplace harassment is when a person is on the receiving end of unwelcome behavior based on his or her protected characteristics. Protected characteristics are those identified by the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA). For example, they sex, gender, disability, race and more. We handle many types of workplace harassment cases, including sexual harassment cases.

Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment is any unwelcome sexual advances that adversely affect an employee’s work conditions. These advances may be:

  • Visual. Visual sexual harassment includes derogatory cartoons, drawings, or posters, and lewd gestures.
  • Verbal. Verbal sexual harassment includes derogatory comments, slurs, sexual comments and jokes.
  • Physical. Examples may include unwanted touching and rubbing. It may also include assault and physical interference with one’s movement or work.

Generally, sexual harassment falls under two main categories. These categories include quid pro quo and a hostile work environment.

Quid pro quo harassment is harassment in which a term of employment is conditioned upon submission to unwelcome sexual advances. A hostile work environment occurs when the harassing conduct unreasonably interferes with an employee’s work performance or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment.

Have you been sexually harassed or otherwise work in a hostile work environment? Contact one of our employment lawyers to learn about your rights. Our experienced Los Angeles sexual harassment attorneys have successfully litigated sexual harassment cases on behalf of employers and employees.

Workplace Discrimination

Federal and California law prohibits employers from discriminating against employees based on several protected characteristics. A few of these protected characteristics include, but are not limited to:

Our workplace discrimination lawyers in Los Angeles help clients distinguish between illegal employment discrimination and non-discriminatory employment actions. We regularly litigate employment discrimination claims on behalf of employees. We have also successfully defended employers against such claims.

Disability Discrimination

Disability discrimination is the unfavorable treatment of an employee or an applicant based on his or her disability or perceived disability. A disability may encompass the following:

  • Physical disability
  • Mental disability
  • Medical condition
  • Genetic information

If you have a disability, and believe your employer has either failed to provide you with reasonable accommodations, or discriminated against you because of your disability, you may have a state or federal cause of action against your employer. We recommend that you discuss your unique situation with our Los Angeles disability discrimination attorneys.

Pregnancy Discrimination

Pregnancy discrimination is the unfavorable treatment of an employee or an applicant based on pregnancy or the ability to become pregnant. In addition, “pregnancy” is a protected characteristic. Discrimination may be based on:

  • Pregnancy
  • Childbirth
  • Medical conditions related to pregnancy or childbirth

If you are pregnant or intend to become pregnant, it is important to understand your rights as a pregnant employee in California. If you believe you are the victim of pregnancy discrimination in the workplace, consider speaking to our attorneys.

More Cases Our Employment Discrimination Lawyers in Los Angeles Handle

Our attorneys also handle workplace discrimination cases involving:

Workplace Retaliation and Whistleblower Claims

Federal and state laws prohibit an employer from “retaliating” against an employee. Retaliation is any adverse employment action against an employee because he or she engaged in a “protected activity.” A protected activity is any activity protected by law or public policy, such as filing a discrimination claim. Examples of retaliation may include, but is not limited to:

  • Poor performance review
  • Hostile work environment
  • Demotion
  • Termination

Some common situations where retaliation may arise include when an employee:

  • Reports employer violations to a state agency.
  • Complains about sexual harassment to his or her employer.
  • Opposes illegal activities in the workplace.

A whistleblower claim arises when an employee reports, threatens to report or refuses to participate in certain types of illegal or improper activities.

Have you been the subjection of retaliatory conduct? You should seek guidance from an employment attorney. Our experienced Los Angeles employment lawyers counsel and represent clients in claims involving workplace retaliation and whistleblowing.

Other Cases We Handle

Our Los Angeles employment attorneys also handle various other employment cases, including:

How an Experienced Employment Lawyer Can Help

Your employer will never admit to any wrongdoing. But our employment lawyers can help you prove that the real reason behind your employer’s actions was discrimination or retaliation. If we can prove that an employment practice or an adverse employment action was based on your membership in a protected class, i.e., your race, age, sex, or disability, we can obtain justice for you.

When assessing the prestige of employment law firms in Los Angeles, it is important to know that we have a proven track record of accomplishment and success. Our founding partner, and Los Angeles employment attorney, Navid Yadegar, has received an AV ranking (highest rating) by the reputable Martindale Hubbell. Members of our team have also been selected as American Lawyer Magazine’s “2013 Go-To Law Firm for the Top 500 Companies.”

When Can I Sue My Employer?

You may be able to sue your employer for their illegal employment practices, but you must be aware of the following caveats:

  1. An employer with less than 15 employees (20 employees for age discrimination claims) is not covered under the anti-discrimination or retaliation laws. So if your employer is a very small business, you may not be able to sue them for illegal harassment, discrimination, hostile work environment, or retaliation.
  2. If your employer has more than the required number of employees, they can be sued, but only if you file a claim with the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) or California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) within a certain timeframe. If you wish to pursue a state employment law claim, you must file a claim with the DFEH within three years from the most recent incident. The deadline to file a charge of discrimination with the EEOC for federal law violations is 300 days of the illegal action. If you don’t file your claim within those time limits, you simply will not be able to pursue a lawsuit in court.

Proving An Employment Law Claim

The most important part of every employment law claim we handle is proving your employer’s illegal behavior and gathering enough evidence to support a judgment against your employer for discrimination or retaliation. This requires factual evidence to support our case.

Most discrimination or retaliation laws prohibit employers from taking specific actions based on an employee’s protected class. In other words, discrimination laws prohibit employers from making certain employment decisions, such as firing, hiring, or promoting an employee, based on things like the employee’s sex, race, or disability.

The US Supreme Court has stated that an employer violates an employee’s rights when it intentionally bases an employment action, wholly or in part, on the employee’s membership in a protected class.

It doesn’t matter if other factors besides the plaintiff’s protected class contributed to the decision. It also doesn’t matter if the employer treated other members of the plaintiff’s protected class the same compared to members outside that protected class.

In practical terms, this means that there can be more than one reason a person is terminated. But it is illegal if any of those reasons concern the employee’s protected class.

Frequently Asked Questions for Our Los Angeles Employment Lawyers

What should I do if I believe I am being harassed or discriminated against at work?

If you believe you are being harassed or discriminated against at work, it is important to document any instances of harassment or discrimination and report them to your employer or its human resources department. If the issue is not resolved or the harassment continues, consult with an employment lawyer from our law firm to discuss your legal options.

Can I be fired for reporting discrimination or harassment at work?

No, it is illegal for an employer to retaliate against an employee for reporting discrimination or harassment at work. If you believe you have been retaliated against, document any instances of the retaliation and contact our law firm to find out what your next steps should be..

What should I do if I have been wrongfully terminated?

If you believe you have been wrongfully terminated, it is important to document the circumstances surrounding your termination and consult with an employment lawyer to discuss what steps you need to take to protect your rights and obtain justice.

Can I recover damages if I win my Los Angeles employment law case? 

Yes, if you win your Los Angeles employment law case, you may be able to recover damages. Damages are monetary awards meant to compensate you for any harm or losses that you suffered as a result of the employment law violation. The types of damages that you may be able to recover include lost wages, back pay, emotional distress, punitive damages, and attorney’s fees. The amount of damages that you can recover will depend on the specific facts of your case and the applicable law. An experienced Los Angeles employment lawyer from our law firm can help you understand your legal rights and the potential damages that you may be entitled to recover.

What is the statute of limitations for employment law cases in California?

The statute of limitations for employment law cases in California can vary depending on the type of claim being brought. That said, here are some general guidelines:

  • Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation Claims: An employee must file a complaint with the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) within one year of the alleged discriminatory, harassing, or retaliatory act. Once the DFEH issues a Right to Sue Notice, the employee has one year to file a lawsuit in court.
  • Breach of Contract Claims: The statute of limitations for breach of contract claims in California is generally four years.
  • Wrongful Termination Claims: The statute of limitations for wrongful termination claims in California is generally two years.

How long does an employment lawsuit take to resolve?

The length of an employment lawsuit can vary depending on the complexity of the case and other factors. Our Los Angeles employment lawyers will work to resolve your case as efficiently as possible while also ensuring that your legal rights are protected.

How much does it cost to hire a Los Angeles employment lawyer?

The skilled Los Angeles employment lawyers at our law firm work on a contingency fee basis, which means you do not pay anything unless we win your case. Furthermore, we offer a free initial evaluation to evaluate your case and discuss your legal options.

Discuss Your Unique Situation With a Los Angeles Employment Attorney

Have you experienced any of these situations? If so, reach out to our Los Angeles employment attorneys to discuss your unique situation. At YMS, we can review your situation to help you determine whether you have a viable employment law case. If we determine that your employment claim is viable, then we will help you devise a plan to get justice.

We offer a free initial evaluation, and we are happy to answer any legal questions you may have about your potential case. Call us today at (310) 499-0140 or fill out our online contact form.