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Wrongful Termination for Reporting Fraud in California

Emanuel Shirazi

Whether you love your job or simply tolerate it for the paycheck, you likely have some level of loyalty to your company. Unfortunately, businesses do not always deserve employee loyalty. Fraud, embezzlement, and other illegal activities happen all the time in the business world, a practice that is perpetuated by those who see what is happening and say nothing.

As an employee, your future is entangled with the ethics of the company you work for. If the business is involved in illegal activities and gets shut down, you lose your income, insurance, and other important benefits. Because of this, it is important to behave ethically and help others to do the same.

If you identify fraud or illegal activity in your workplace in California, you may feel conflicted about how to proceed. On the one hand, you know that the company’s behavior is wrong, while on the other hand, you do not want to be punished for exposing potentially illegal activities. Fortunately, the law protects you and your job in these situations.

Reporting Fraud and Retaliation

The law states that, as an employee, you are allowed to report any suspected wrongdoing in your workplace without fear of retaliation. Your employer may not fire you, demote you, or treat you negatively after you report your suspicion of fraud. This is considered retaliation if they do, and you can take legal action to recover the damage that they caused you.

Retaliation is illegal in any scenario where an employee exerts their rights in the workplace. You have the right to report illegal activity, and therefore any retaliatory behavior is strictly prohibited. This is the case even if your report ends up being inaccurate. As long as you reported the activity from a genuine place of concern, you should not be fired for your actions. However, if you falsify your experiences in order to slander your employer, you may face the consequences of your actions.

Participation in Fraud

In some situations, you may not simply learn about fraudulent activities; you may be asked to participate in them. In these instances, you have every right to say no without being terminated from your job. It is considered wrongful termination if you refuse to participate in illegal activities and you get fired.

You can be wrongfully terminated even if you did not report the activities but simply refused to participate in them. Even if you were planning to stay uninvolved, your employer might fire you out of fear. This is unacceptable and throws your whole financial situation in jeopardy. Fortunately, wrongful termination has consequences, and through legal action, you can gain back lost wages and benefits, emotional distress, punitive damages, and attorneys’ fees.

Hiring an Attorney

Whether you have been asked to participate in fraudulent activities or have simply become aware of them, it is important to protect yourself. Even though you have not done anything wrong, being proactive can ensure that you navigate the situation in the best possible manner. An experienced Los Angeles employment attorney can help to protect your rights and provide you with the necessary information to make empowered decisions throughout the complicated situation at hand.

When looking for a wrongful termination attorney, it is important to find someone who has experience in this area of the law. These cases are complicated, and attorneys from other fields are usually unable to handle them properly. Be sure to ask any potential Los Angeles wrongful termination attorneys about their
experience and track record in cases like yours, and you can always trust our team at Shirazi Law Firm.

FAQs About Wrongful Termination for Reporting Fraud in California

What Qualifies as Wrongful Termination in California?

Wrongful termination occurs when an employer fires an employee for a protected class or situation. Protected classes include the following:

  • Race
  • Gender/gender expression
  • Sexual orientation
  • Religion
  • Age
  • Disability/medical condition
  • National Origin
  • Military or veteran status

There are also certain life events that cannot be a reason for termination:

  • Family and Medical Leave Act absences
  • Pregnancy
  • Whistleblowing or reporting illegal activity

If you believe you have been terminated for one of these reasons, you can take action.

What Is the Statute of Limitations on Wrongful Termination in California?

1-3 years depending on the type of claim. This means you have 1-3 years after the date of your termination to file a wrongful termination claim against your former employer. However, it is best to file your claim as soon as possible. Key evidence can be deleted, destroyed, or otherwise lost if you wait. The best course of action is to begin building your case as soon as you realize that you have been wrongfully terminated.

Contact Shirazi Law Firm Online

For many years, our team has been helping employees to fight back against predatory and illegal employer behaviors. We understand how intimidating and serious these cases can be, and we do everything in our power to support you during your case. No matter the circumstances, we aim to help you through this time.

For more information, contact Shirazi Law Firm online today.

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