Month: March 2014

California’s DFEH Report Highlights Discrimination Trends

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The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH), California’s civil rights agency, recently submitted an annual report showing trends toward filings related to disability, race and gender-based discrimination.

In 2012, there were 19,839 employment cases filed with the DFEH. The majority of the DFEH cases were for: Disability Discrimination (13,452), Race/Color Discrimination (6,990), and Sexual Harassment (6,169).

Trending in 2014 is an expected increase in discrimination cases based on gender, gender identity and gender expression. Also trending is an expected increase in cases brought under the California Family Rights Act and Pregnancy Disability Leave laws.

Read More: http://goo.gl/uvAb3h

The Law Offices of Payab & Associates is a Los Angeles based law firm with more than 17 years of experience in employment cases. Our office has successfully litigated many complex disputes including wrongful termination, sexual harassment, racial discrimination, wage and labor disputes, and retaliation cases.

Are you or anyone you know been discriminated at work? Contact the Law Offices of Payab & Associates @ (800) 401-4466 or visit http://employmentlawyersla.com/ if you have any questions regarding your rights at the workplace.

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If I get injured in an accident or wrongfully terminated, how long do I have to make a claim?

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The time you have to file a lawsuit will vary from state to state depending on statute of limitations. Statute of limitation is the time within which a lawsuit or claim must be filed.

Some common statute of limitations include:

Personal Injury cases – you have 2 years from the day of the accident to file a lawsuit.
Discrimination, Harassment, Retaliation under California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (age, race, sex, disability, national origin discrimination, etc.) – Claims must be initially filed with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing within 1 year. Once the DFEH issues a Right to Sue Notice, the claimant has 1 year to file a case in court. Note that even if you miss the 1 year statute of limitations to file a DFEH Complaint, you can still file a claim for wrongful termination of public policy within the 2 year standard tort statute of limitations. Of course, when a potential FEHA claim is pursued as a public policy claim, you can not collect your attorneys’ fees as you could under FEHA.
Discrimination, Harassment, Retaliation under Title VII, ADEA and ADA (age, race, sex, disability, national origin discrimination, etc.) – In California, claims must be initially filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission with 300 days. Once the EEOC issues a Right to Sue Notice, the claimant has 90 days to file a case in federal court.
Unpaid Overtime, Minimum Wage, Meal and Rest Breaks – Claims must be filed with the Labor Commissioner or in court within 3 years of when the wages were earned.
Breach of Contract – If the contract is written, the lawsuit must be filed within 4 years of when the breach occurred. If the contract is oral or implied-in-fact, it must be filed within 2 years of the breach.
California Equal Pay Act – Actions for wage discrimination claims (ie- the opposite sex is paid a higher wage based on gender) is within 2 years for most actions, and 3 years if the violation was willful.
Family Medical Leave Act – Any action must be filed within 2 years after the violation, or within 3 years if the violation was willful.

If you’re debating whether or not to pursue a claim now or later down the road it will generally be to your benefit to file sooner than later as it’s typically easier to collect evidence and prove damages before too much time has passed.

The Law Offices of Payab & Associates is a Los Angeles based law firm with more than 17 years of experience in employment and personal injury cases. Our office has successfully litigated many complex disputes including car accidents, wrongful termination, sexual harassment, racial discrimination, wage and labor disputes, and retaliation cases.

Questions? Contact the Law Offices of Payab & Associates @ (800) 401-4466 or visit http://www.payablaw.com/

Pregnant? 5 Ways to Protect Yourself from Discrimination at Work

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While there is blatant pregnancy discrimination in the workplace, more often, it’s a little less obvious. Fortunately, there are federal laws that make it illegal to discriminate against pregnant women or those with children. Knowing your legal rights may serve you well.

The Pregnancy Discrimination Act makes it unlawful for an employer with 15 or more employees to discriminate on the basis of pregnancy or a pregnancy-related condition. Moreover, women that have difficult pregnancies that result in health problems may be protected by the American’s with Disabilities Act. Most often, employers fire pregnant employees, citing poor performance or violation of attendance policies, even when non-pregnant employees with similar performance are not terminated.

Here are five steps you can take to protect yourself at work:

1. Don’t wait too long to tell your employer you are pregnant. This way if you are fired or demoted, you may be able to protect yourself with anti-discrimination laws.
2. If you are still at work and believe that your employer is discriminating against you, report it, in writing, to human resources or your boss.
3. If you are fired or demoted, ask why. Again, this should be done in writing.
4. If you are having a difficult pregnancy, discuss with your doctor how this is affecting you at work. You may be entitled to “reasonable accommodations” — including time away from work for medical care, more frequent breaks, and lifting restrictions. It is best for your doctor to provide a letter explaining the issue to your employer.
5. Even if you do not plan to ask for changes at work, make sure that your boss or supervisor knows about health-related issues which you suffer from. This way, you may be protected if your employer later tries to fire or demote you.

Taking these steps can help protect you against pregnancy discrimination.

Read More: http://goo.gl/9cXlIY

The Law Offices of Payab & Associates is a Los Angeles based law firm with more than 17 years of experience in employment cases. Our office has successfully litigated many complex disputes including wrongful termination, sexual harassment, pregnancy discrimination, wage and labor disputes, and retaliation cases.

Are you or anyone you know been discriminated at work? Contact the Law Offices of Payab & Associates @ (800) 401-4466 or visit http://employmentlawyersla.com/ if you have any questions regarding your rights at the workplace.

What is Paid Time Off? And Why You Should Use It Before You Lose It

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Paid time off is a policy in some employee handbooks that provides a bank of hours in which the employer pools sick days, vacation days, and personal days that allows employees to use as the need or desire arises. Upon employment, the employer determines how many paid time off hours will be allotted per year.

Paid time off may have another effect, though. If your sick days, personal days, and vacation days all draw down your bank of free time, you may be less likely to take a day off when you are a little under the weather.

Saving paid time off can work well for you if your employer lets you hold on to all your unused days. But a new survey found that companies are less and less inclined to let you do that. Just 9 percent of employers allow employees to cash out unused vacation time when they leave their jobs.

But with fewer employers allowing carry-overs of unused time, you have less and less reason to save it. After all, if you can’t use the time later, why wait?

Read More: http://goo.gl/9N5bJG

The Law Offices of Payab & Associates is a Los Angeles based law firm with more than 17 years of experience in employment cases. Our office has successfully litigated many complex disputes including wrongful termination, sexual harassment, racial discrimination, wage and labor disputes, and retaliation cases.

Questions about your rights at the workplace? Contact the Law Offices of Payab & Associates @ (800) 401-4466 or visit http://employmentlawyersla.com/

Accommodation of Employees’ Religious Beliefs

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Accommodating religious beliefs is a delicate task for employers. However, communicating and working with employees to determine possible accommodations are your best strategies.

The employer is responsible for offering reasonable accommodation. After doing so, the employer will have met his or her obligation even if the employee does not agree with or consent to the accommodation.

Evidence of thorough and thoughtful participation in the interactive process will always serve the employer well. It is also critical to document the various accommodations the employer offers and the employee’s responses to these accommodations. As such, all accommodations should be documented and reported to supervisors and HR.

Read More: http://goo.gl/AGiP1v

The Law Offices of Payab & Associates is a Los Angeles based law firm with more than 17 years of experience in employment cases. Our office has successfully litigated many complex disputes including wrongful termination, sexual harassment, religious discrimination, wage and labor disputes, and retaliation cases.

Are you or anyone you know been discriminated based on religion at work? Contact the Law Offices of Payab & Associates @ (800) 401-4466 or visit http://employmentlawyersla.com/ if you have any questions regarding your rights at the workplace.

What To Do After A Car Accident?

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Dealing with a car accident can be a headache. With the following instructions, you will be able to handle the situation more smoothly.

1. Take pictures of the scene of the accident and your injuries. This will help you have some proof to help explain your side of the story.
2. Take notes of everything, including: names, contact info, injuries, medical diagnoses, treatments, medications you have taken, missed days from work, changes in your everyday routine, etc.
3. Contact your insurance company right away to let them know of your car accident. Make sure you have your notes ready when you call.
4. Seek medical treatment right away after your injury. Your health is the most important thing you should be concerned about. If you delay the process, it can be a hindrance to your recovery, and to your case.
5. Find a personal injury lawyer to help you with the process. Car accident cases are done on a contingency basis meaning that you do not have to pay anything for the legal service until the lawyer has won the case for you. This also means there is NO cost if there is no recovery.
6. Do not sign anything until you have reviewed it with your lawyer. If you sign some documents, you can give up certain rights in the future, so do not attempt to handle anything yourself.

Read More: http://goo.gl/YLerml

With more than 20 years of combined legal experience, personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Payab & Associates have successfully employed an assertive, methodical approach to help injured victims recover generous settlements and jury verdicts.

Contact a Personal Injury Attorney at the Law Offices of Payab & Associates by calling (800) 401-4466 or visiting http://www.payablaw.com/

Daughter’s Facebook Post Ruins Father’s Discrimination Suit

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Be careful what you post on Facebook… It may nullify your settlement agreement!

A Florida man learned this lesson when he won an age discrimination lawsuit against his former employer. He was set to receive a $80,000 settlement until his daughter took to social post to post: “Mama and Papa Snay won the case against Gulliver. Gulliver is now officially paying for my vacation to Europe this summer. SUCK IT.”

A few days later, the father was informed that he had broken a confidentiality agreement that stated that he and his wife could not disclose the details of the settlement to anyone. The court ruled in favor of the former employer and the man’s $80,000 settlement became void.

Read More: http://goo.gl/OTSDjq

Are you or anyone you know been discriminated at work? Contact the Law Offices of Payab & Associates @ (800) 401-4466 or visit http://employmentlawyersla.com/ if you have any questions regarding your rights at the workplace.

What is contingency fee?

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Contingency fee means that the lawyer must win your case before he or she can be paid for the work. This means you do not have to pay anything for the legal service until the lawyer has won the case for you. This also means there is NO cost if there is no recovery.

Our attorneys at Law Offices of Payab & Associates take your employment and personal injury cases on a contingency basis. This is our guarantee for all of our employment and personal injury cases. Please contact us if you have any questions.

The Law Offices of Payab & Associates is a Los Angeles based law firm with more than 17 years of experience in employment and personal injury cases.

Contact the Law Offices of Payab & Associates @ (800) 401-4466 or visit http://www.payablaw.com/

American with Disabilities Act: Reasonable Accommodations Only Need to Be Offered Upon Request

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An important court decision recently confirmed that an employer has no duty to offer reasonable accommodations to an employee with a disability until the employee specifically requests an accommodation. That’s true even when the employer is aware of the employee’s disability.

To establish an American with Disabilities Act (ADA) claim, an employee must show that he or she:
1. Has a disability as defined by the ADA,
2. Is qualified, with or without a reasonable accommodation, to perform the functions of his job, and
3. Suffered discrimination because of his disability.

The court found that before an employee can be deemed “not qualified” for his job, the employer must take an effort to accommodate his disability. However, the employee has a duty to request a reasonable accommodation. An employer is not required to offer an accommodation, even though he knows the employee is disabled under the ADA. The court stated that “it is not the employer’s responsibility to anticipate the employee’s needs and affirmatively offer accommodation.”

In making a request for an accommodation, the employee need not utter any magic words, nor must he say that he is request a reasonable accommodation. Furthermore, the request need not be in writing. However, the employee must make clear that he wants assistance for his disability. Also, the employee must be clear that he needs an accommodation for his disability.

PRACTICAL ADVISE: If you think you may need reasonable accommodation for your disability at your workplace, let your employer know as soon as possible.

Read More: http://goo.gl/8iIsz2

Are you or anyone you know been discriminated at work? Contact the Law Offices of Payab & Associates @ (800) 401-4466 or visit http://employmentlawyersla.com/ if you have any questions regarding your rights at the workplace.

What is Medical Leave and When Are You Entitled to One?

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The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) entitles an employee to 12 work weeks of unpaid leave during any 12-month period to attend to the serious health condition of the employee, parent, spouse or child, or for pregnancy or care of a newborn child, or for adoption or foster care of a child.

In order to be eligible for FMLA leave, an employee must have been at the business at least 12 months, and worked at least 1,250 hours over the past 12 months, and work at a location where the company employs 50 or more employees within 75 miles. Also, an employee seeking medical leave must give the employer notice of the need for leave and indicate when the employee anticipates returning to work.

The employee must provide information to the employer to suggest that his or her health condition could be serious. When the leave is foreseeable, the employee must give at least 30 days’ notice. When the leave isn’t foreseeable, the employer must provide notice to his or her employer as soon as practicable under the circumstances.

PRACTICAL ADVICE: If you think you have a serious health condition that could entitle you to a medical leave, give your employee at least a 30 days’ notice or as soon as practicable under the circumstances.

Read More: http://goo.gl/2lovlN

If you or anyone you know is entitled to a medical leave, contact the Law Offices of Payab & Associates @ (800) 401-4466 or visit http://employmentlawyersla.com/ if you have any questions regarding your rights at the workplace.