For years, employees who report wrongdoing have been subjected to a wide range of retaliation by their employers. Both state and federal laws have sought to correct this problem and encourage disclosures by enacting protections for whistleblowers. Unfortunately, retaliation still occurs in many workplaces in California. It is important for workers to enforce their rights as whistleblowers in order to prevent retaliation by other employers.
Learn more about the legal protections that are already in place, the many different forms of retaliation that are prohibited, and how a whistleblower retaliation lawyer near you can help enforce legal rights to make all California workplaces safer for those who report wrongdoing.
Whistleblowers in California have legal protections under both state and federal law. The California Whistleblower Protection Act prevents retaliation against government employees who report wasteful government activity to the State Auditor. Employees who report labor violations to the Labor Commissioner’s Office are also protected from retaliation. There are many federal laws that also protect whistleblowers.
For example, the Sarbanes Oxley Act of 2002 was passed in response to Enron and other investor scandals in the early 2000s. It has many provisions that require disclosure of fraudulent activity by publicly traded companies. In order to ensure that these provisions are enforced, the Act also provides whistleblower protections to ensure that employees who make required disclosures do not face retaliation. This is just one of many federal laws that enact whistleblower protections for employees who report illegal conduct by their employer. It is important to consult with an employment lawyer about the specific whistleblower laws that apply to a particular case.
Retaliation can take many forms. The most obvious act of retaliation is firing an employee who makes a protected disclosure, but retaliation is not always this obvious. Sometimes an employer will try to demote an employee or switch them to a more difficult shift. The employer might give the employer fewer responsibilities or less room for advancement. The employee might be disciplined for seemingly minor infractions that are not enforced against other workers – or infractions that have been made up entirely.
Retaliation is often subtle. This can make it difficult to prove, but that doesn’t mean that employees should simply allow it to happen. An employment lawyer can evaluate a specific situation to determine whether the actions amount to retaliation – and if so, whether it will be possible to prove it in court.
Whistleblowers have important legal protections under both state and federal law. It is important for these brave employees to enforce their legal rights: not only does this enforce the individual’s right to be protected from retaliation, but it also discourages retaliation by other employers. Workplaces throughout California are made safer for whistleblowers when employees enforce their legal rights. Minnis and Smallets is a California employment law firm that protects the legal rights of whistleblowers. Contact us today to schedule a consultation with an experienced California employment law attorney.
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