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Employment Law

Employment law encompasses all areas of the employer/employee relationship -- from the hiring stage to promotion to termination. This relationship is governed by thousands of state and federal laws, making it one of the most heavily regulated relationships.

As in any relationship, disputes arise. Allegations of discrimination, sexual harassment, hostile work environment and wage-hour violations interfere with an otherwise mutually beneficial economic association. The Hemet and Temecula employment lawyers of Davis & Wojcik provide our clients with a suitable outcome to these employment disputes through knowledgeable and devoted representation.

Unlike most firms, Davis & Wojcik represents clients on both sides of the employment relationship and can provide valuable insight on the opposing party’s thought process. If you are an employee suffering from one of the following adverse employment actions or an employer who has been accused of unlawful activity, Davis & Wojcik can help.

Discrimination

Federal and state laws prohibit employers from discriminating against employees for being part of a protected class, such as race, sex, disability, age, sexual orientation, or religion. However, determining whether discrimination occurred is not easy and depends on the individual facts of the case. At Davis & Wojcik, we analyze each case with a fair and unbiased prospective to provide a realistic assessment of liability.

Retaliation

It is unlawful for an employer to retaliate against an employee for being part of protected class, reporting illegal conduct, refusing to engage in illegal conduct, participating in a workplace investigation, filing a wage claim or lawsuit, complaining of workplace conditions or assisting other employees who complain of illegal workplace activity. Retaliation can occur in any number of “adverse employment actions.” The Temecula and Hemet employment lawyers of Davis & Wojcik use their vast litigation experience to prosecute and defend lawsuits when retaliation has occurred.

Wrongful Termination

Wrongful termination occurs when an employer unlawfully terminates an employee for any of the above-cited protected activity (i.e. discrimination and retaliation) or any other reason that violates public policy. While all termination may seem unfair, it is not “wrongful” unless it violates the law. The employment lawyers at Davis & Wojcik understand the difference and can provide experienced representation on both sides of the employment relationship.

Sexual Harassment

Quid pro quo harassment occurs when a supervisor, either expressly or impliedly, requires a subordinate to submit to sexual advances by threat of an adverse employment action. Hostile work environment sexual harassment occurs when any person employed by the employer engages in harassing conduct that is either severe or pervasive. Sexual harassment is serious misconduct that impacts the lives of the victim, the accused and the employer. Retaining an attorney from Davis & Wojcik, with experience representing all sides, has strategic benefits in litigating sexual harassment claims.

Hostile Work Environment

A hostile work environment is not exclusive to sexual harassment. However, to be considered “hostile,” the severe or pervasive conduct must be directed at a protected class, such as race, sex, disability, age, sexual orientation, or religion. A hostile work environment must be created by more than just a personality conflict. At Davis & Wojcik, we are sensitive to the issues that create hostile work environment and can provide you with experienced representation.

Unpaid Wages

California’s wage and hour laws are complex and expansive. Unpaid wage claims include, but are not limited to, minimum wage violations, unpaid overtime, missed meal and rest period premiums, and failure to pay wages timely upon separation. In the hospitality industry, unpaid wages could include tip theft. The employment attorneys at Davis & Wojcik are knowledgeable on wage and hour laws and can provide an accurate liability assessment as well as legal representation.

Missed Meal and Rest Period Violations

California employers are required to provide a thirty (30) minute meal break to non-exempt employees who work more than five (5) hours in a day. If the employee works over ten (10) hours, the employee is entitled to two, thirty (30) minute meal breaks. Employers must also authorize and permit one uninterrupted rest periods for all nonexempt employees for every four (4) hours, or substantial fraction thereof. An employment lawyer at Davis & Wojcik can offer experienced representation in any meal and rest period violation litigation.

Health and Safety Violations (Cal-OSHA)

The California Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1973 (Cal-OSHA) prohibits employers from retaliating against employees who make good-faith complaints about work place safety and health. Specifically, Labor Code § 6310 makes it unlawful for an employer to discharge or in any manner discriminate against an employee for making a bona fide complaint to his or her employer of unsafe working conditions or practices. Davis & Wojcik can protect employees who make bonafide complaints and assist employees in ensuring safe work environments.

Employment Contracts

In California, all employment relationships are presumed to be “at-will,” which means either side can end the employment relationship at any time. However, the at-will presumption can be overcome is if there is an agreement between the parties, either express or implied, that the employment is intended to last for a longer period. The business law attorneys at Davis & Wojcik have experience with the formation, termination and litigation of employment contracts.

Maternity Leave and FMLA Rights

State and federal law provide for up to 12 weeks of protected maternity leave with a guarantee that the employee will return to his or her original position or an equivalent position. The law further prohibits retaliation or interference with the exercise of an employee’s right to take leave. Administering these rights is complex. If a dispute arises, the employment law attorneys at Davis & Wojcik can provide valuable representation.

If you are part of an employment relationship that has encountered one of the foregoing issues, you may contact Davis & Wojcik by calling (951) 587-2222 or submitting a message through our online contact form.

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During an employment dispute, I sought help from an Attorney. Choosing a strong, local firm was important to me. Mr. Thompson of DWD is a knowledgeable, supportive attorney who took the time to answer my questions, investigate, and advocate on my behalf. I highly recommend Dan Thompson if you are ever in need of legal advice or assistance. Michelle