California has some of the most employee-friendly labor laws in the U.S. Whether you are a new worker in Los Angeles or a Los Angeles native, understanding the legal protections you have as an employee may be beneficial in protecting your rights and holding employers accountable in instances of unlawful employment practices. From access to your personnel file to unemployment insurance eligibility, an experienced Los Angeles employment law lawyer may help you understand if you may have a case against your employer. 

Blackstone Law is an award-winning employment law firm dedicated to aggressively advocating for the rights of employees. We have secured over 200 million in settlements and verdicts for clients by providing aggressive representation at every stage of the legal process. With our track record of success, we understand how to hold companies, institutions, and individuals accountable for injustice and are prepared to fight for you.

6 Things Everyone Should Know About Los Angeles, CA Employment Law

No matter your job title nor the amount of time you have worked at a company, all employees must be treated fairly within a workplace. Employment law, or labor law, encompasses the employer-employee relationship as well as the rights and legal obligations of both parties. Employers do not always adhere to the laws in place to protect employees. When this occurs, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced employment law lawyer to hold employers accountable for their unlawful actions. 

To better understand your employee rights under California law, you should be aware of the following protections: 

1. You Have a Right to See Your Personnel File 

According to California Labor Code Section 1198.5, both current and former employees have a right to access their personnel files at any time in order to gain the information regarding their job performance. Your employer must permit you to inspect and copy it for your records within a reasonable amount of time. 

2. You May Recover Waiting Time Penalties if Your Final Wages Are Late 

If you are terminated or laid off, your employer must pay wages owed to you upon severance according to California Labor Code Section 201. With a 72-hour notice of quitting, you are entitled to all wages due to you on your last day. If you do not provide a 72-hour notice, your wages are due after a 72-hour notice period. 

If your employer refuses to abide by these time limits, they may have to pay a penalty for each day that your wages are late, for up to 30 days. 

3. You Are Entitled to Unused Vacation Pay 

When your employment ends, you do not forfeit unused vacation time. You are entitled to unpaid wages, which include unused vacation pay. 

4. A Former Employer Cannot Say False Things About You When Giving a Reference 

If a former employer is contacted for a job reference, they are legally permitted to say negative things about you or your job performance, as long as it is not false. However, your former employer may not knowingly provide false information about your work performance to hinder your ability to get a new job. 

5. Your Employer May Not Deduct Your Pay if You Make a Reasonable Mistake 

Your employer may not deduct your wages to offset an inadvertent mistake, cash shortage, or loss caused by an accident. In order to lawfully deduct pay from your paycheck, your employer must demonstrate that the error, cash shortage, or loss caused by an accident was the result of dishonesty, willful misconduct, or gross negligence.

6. You Can Refuse to Do Unsafe Work 

You are permitted to refuse unsafe work according to California Labor Code Section 6311 as long as it is in violation of Cal/OSHA standards or Labor Code requirements and is dangerous enough that any reasonable person would think that their health or safety would be in danger by doing the work. Before refusing to perform unsafe work, you must inform your supervisor of the unsafe condition and give them an opportunity to correct the unsafe condition.

If the company does not correct the unsafe condition, inform your supervisor, in writing and/or in front of others, why you are refusing to do the work and that you will return to work when the unsafe condition is fixed.

Speak With the Experienced California Employment Law Lawyers at Blackstone Law 

If you suspect that your legal rights as an employee have been violated by your employer, speak with an experienced Los Angeles employment law lawyer at Blackstone Law. We have an extensive track record of success, securing multi-millions in settlements and verdicts. With dedicated and tireless representation, we will fight for the compensation you deserve and ensure that your rights are upheld. 

Request a free consultation by calling (310) 956-4054 or filling out our contact form today.