Representing the Rights of California Employees Who are Furloughed or Laid Off
Many unexpected circumstances – such as a global coronavirus pandemic – can lead employers to furlough or lay off workers. While many people use these terms interchangeably, the distinction is important to know your rights as an employee who is unable to work.
If you have been furloughed or laid off, it is important to discuss the matter with an experienced California employment law attorney. Contact Mara Law Firm today for more information.
Layoffs vs. Furloughs
Both of these terms are commonly used to refer to temporary or indefinite job loss. In general, furlough refers to a temporary stoppage of work, while a lay off is usually permanent. Furloughing employees often means they are more likely to return to work when the need and ability arise, and it can eliminate the need for another onboarding process when they return. Some employers continue to provide benefits like health insurance coverage during a furlough. Companies do not need to pay furloughed employees who do not perform any work during a pay period. However, employees might qualify for unemployment benefits while they are out of work, especially in light of the COVID-19 shutdown.
If you are laid off, it usually severs the employment relationship permanently. This means your employer must provide your final paycheck, along with compensation for accrued PTO and vacation time. An employer should also provide COBRA notice to employees on the health plan. If you are laid off, and your employer fails to provide the compensation you are entitled to, you should discuss the matter with an experienced employment lawyer.
Breach of Contract Claims
While many employment relationships at at-will, some employees signed contracts that are for a specific duration. Within that time period, the employer can only terminate the employment for good cause, which usually involves misconduct or poor performance of the employee. If you have an employment contract and your employer laid you off before the contract has expired, you might be able to take action for breach of contract.
Similarly, if you have a severance agreement that you and your employer signed, you should receive the compensation or other benefits provided for in the contract. Many employers who are laying people off are struggling financially, and they might try to get out of paying severance. This can give you the right to file for breach of contract and collect the payment you deserve.
Another concern is that employers are only laying off or furloughing certain employees for unlawful reasons. For example, there has been a surge in discriminatory conduct against people of Asian or Asian-American descent due to the supposed origination of the coronavirus in China. Employers may not furlough or lay off employees because of their actual or perceived race, ethnicity, or national origin.
Contact an Experienced California Employment Lawyer
If you are concerned that your employer has violated your rights in any manner, a California employment attorney at Mara Law Firm is ready to help. Call 619-234-2833 or contact us online for a free case evaluation and to discuss your rights.
Company Name: Mara Law Firm
Contact Person: David Mara
Email: Send Email
Address:2650 Camino Del Rio North, Suite #205
City: San Diego
State: CA, 92108
Country: United States