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  • terminated employee

    If you work in California and are not a union member, chances are that your employment is “at will.” This means that your employer can terminate your employment at any time, with or without notice, for almost any reason they see fit. The key word here is “almost.” Even if your status is “at will,” an employer cannot discriminate against or terminate you for reasons that the law specifically prohibits.

    Is Your Employment “At Will?”

    In California, the presumption is that your employment is “at will.” This is reflected in Cal. Labor Code Section 2922: “An employment, having no specified term, may be terminated at the will of either party on notice to the other. Employment for a specified term means an employment for a period greater than one month.”

    The default of “at will” status can be altered through a contractual agreement. Most frequently, this happens when unions negotiate collective bargaining agreements on behalf of their members. Collective bargaining agreements usually provide job protections, including by requiring progressive discipline and “just cause” to terminate an employee.

    An individual employee can also enter into an employment contract for . . .

  • unsigned severance agreement

    Employers often offer severance payments to employees who are terminated or laid off. The payments usually come with strings attached; mainly, that employees must give up all rights to sue the employer for any claims that they may have. Employees may be required to sign lengthy severance agreements with complicated terms and conditions to receive their payment.

    If you are provided with a severance agreement, you must think carefully before signing it. You are well-advised to consult with an experienced employment lawyer to help make an informed decision. A lawyer can help you understand the legal rights you are giving up. They can explain [ . . . ]

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