When someone loses their source of income after they are fired or laid off, their entire life may change in an instant. Unfortunately, in Palo Alto, Santa Clara, and across the state of California, some employees have been wrongfully terminated from their job. With regard to wrongful dismissal, it is very important to understand which factors comprise just cause if you are represented by a labor union. Furthermore, these factors can also impact an at-will employee who was wrongfully terminated, such as those who were subjected to unlawful discrimination and whistleblower retaliation.
The State of California Employment Development Department presents the seven factors which are used to determine just cause on their website, which may be helpful to review if you were unlawfully fired from your job. Arbitrators take these factors into account when determining whether or not an employer who terminated an employee's contract had just cause. For example, was the employee forewarned by the employer of the potential consequences of their actions? Also, were the employer's rules prohibiting such actions genuinely related to their business interests? Was an investigation conducted prior to the disciplinary action and if so, was the investigation fair and did it show clear evidence of wrongdoing? Other factors include whether an employer has punished other employees equally for the same wrongdoing and if the disciplinary action was appropriate given the employee's misconduct and their past record.