There is a great deal of misunderstanding of what constitutes wrongful termination against public policy. For example, if an employee complains to his boss that the boss is giving false reports to upper management, and as a result the boss fires the employee, the employee does not have a right to wrongful termination based on public policy. This is because the action of the boss does not affect the public at large.
However, if an employee is a quality control analyst and is asked by his boss to certify aircraft parts, which do not meet specifications, the employee's actions can put the public at risk. The public has an interest in flying in airplanes in which the parts are not defective. Therefore, the employee has a right to sue for wrongful termination based on public policy if he is fired for refusing to certify the parts.
At Alan Burton Newman, PLC, our Los Angeles employment law attorney can help you understand and protect your rights.
Labor Code Section 1102.5 is designed to protect whistleblowers from wrongful termination. Prior to 2014, Section 1102.5 was limited to cases where employees reported illegal activity to government or law enforcement agencies. Since then, it has been amended to include cases where such information is disclosed to a "person with authority over the employee or to a person who has authority to investigate, discover or correct the alleged violation or noncompliance."
Employees in a broad range of fields, including healthcare practitioners, are now protected from employer retaliation after reporting illegal activity in the workplace.
Health and Safety Code Section 1278.5 takes this protection a step further by providing whistleblower protections in situations where patient safety is at risk. The statute prohibits a health facility from discrimination or retaliation against a patient, employee, member of the medical staff, or other healthcare worker for reporting suspected unsafe patient care or conditions at the facility. The statute further provides that if the retaliatory acts occur within 120 days of disclosure, there is a rebuttable presumption that the actions were done in retaliation for the disclosure.
If you have had your job terminated because of reporting a danger and believe that it is an issue of public policy, do not hesitate to contact Alan Burton Newman to assist you with your case today. As a Harvard graduate and a Los Angeles employment lawyer with over 30 years of experience, Alan Burton Newman knows what it takes to fight for your rights. He proudly helps clients like you in employment law cases and is dedicated to pursuing resolutions with your best interests in mind.
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