Experienced San Diego Work Discrimination Attorney Ready To Assist You
Also Serving in Solana Beach and Representing Clients Across California, Including LA County, Palm Springs, Indio, Lancaster, and More
If your employer has discriminated against you, it can make your life unbearable.
You know that workplace discrimination is illegal, but you feel overwhelmed and helpless when you think about an employment discrimination lawsuit. You need an experienced San Diego workplace discrimination lawyer to represent you in this stressful time.
The John W. Dalton Law Offices can zealously fight by your side against workplace discrimination. John Dalton is an experienced San Diego employment discrimination attorney and a nationally recognized advocate. He has dedicated his career to helping victims of discrimination like you. In addition to being a tireless negotiator, he is a highly knowledgeable trial lawyer with experience representing people from various backgrounds facing employment discrimination. Some of his successes include:
- Winning a $30 million jury verdict for employees who suffered sexual harassment by their supervisor at Ralph’s Grocery Store (Gober v. Ralph’s Grocery Company, San Diego County Superior Court);
- Representing teenaged cinema workers who endured a hostile work environment and sex discrimination, winning them $6,850,000 (Marcisz v. Ultrastar Cinemas, San Diego County Superior Court); and
- Fighting for an employee who experienced sex discrimination and winning a jury verdict of $1,250,000 against the employer (Moran v. Shah Management, Inc., Riverside County Superior Court);
- Representing employees from diverse backgrounds who suffered workplace discrimination in court, mediations, and negotiations against their employers; and
- Negotiating millions of dollars in settlements for employees with employment discrimination claims.
You have the power to fight workplace discrimination. You have rights that protect you from discriminatory behavior in the workplace. Moreover, if your employer has discriminated against you, you can receive compensation for your losses, like the many workers in the above cases.
You do not have to fight your employer alone. Call the John W. Dalton Law Offices if you want an experienced and fervent San Diego work discrimination attorney on your side. We are dedicated to making workplace discrimination a thing of the past. We are standing by to help you fight for justice and achieve a safe, professional workplace.
Understanding Workplace Discrimination in California
Employment discrimination is an unfortunate reality in modern life. In fact, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission—the federal agency tasked with fighting employment discrimination—received over 67,000 workplace discrimination claims just in 2020.
Understanding workplace discrimination is critical to understanding your rights. There are various federal laws that prohibit different kinds of employment discrimination. Examples include the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.
However, this collection of federal laws provides a “floor” of minimum protection. California has a state-specific law called the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) that creates additional protections against discrimination in the workplace for California workers.
Specifically, FEHA prohibits an employer from discriminating against an employee—specifically with regard to their compensation or the terms, conditions, or privileges of employment—because they belong to a protected class. It also protects employees from discrimination for requesting leave that they are entitled to and employees who report violations of state and federal laws.
What Are “Terms, Conditions, and Privileges of Employment”?
Basically, this phrase refers to anything relating to your job. Examples include promotions, bonuses, workload distribution, office environment, and inappropriate comments in the workplace. Additionally, when your employer reduces your salary, changes your working hours, or fires you, they are altering the terms and conditions of your employment. You may have a claim for employment discrimination if your employer does these things because you belong to a protected class.
If you feel that you have been discriminated against at work, contact us for a free consultation and tell us your story. Our experienced San Diego County workplace discrimination attorney can help you determine what is going on and your next steps.
What Is a Protected Class?
A protected class refers to a group of people who share a common characteristic. The list of protected classes is defined by anti-discrimination laws. FEHA states that the following are all protected classes:
- Gender identity,
- Sexual orientation,
- Gender expression,
- Disability (both mental and physical),
- Medical condition,
- Genetic information,
- National origin,
- Military/veteran status, and
The protected class of “sex” under the FEHA includes pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, and medical issues related to a person’s pregnancy status. “Sex” also includes gender, gender identity, and gender expression.
Common Signs of Discrimination
Although discrimination comes in all shapes and sizes, there are several particular common signs of discrimination, including:
- Different workloads for employees in the same position;
- Failing to discipline employees equally for the same conduct;
- Lack of diversity throughout the organization; and
- Offensive communication.
Furthermore, discrimination can be direct or indirect. In other words, it can be based on direct comments, gestures, or behavior by your employer or co-worker, or it can manifest as an indirect and discriminatory effect. Discrimination does not have to be intentional. Call our experienced San Diego work discrimination lawyer John W. Dalton. Share your story, and let us fight for your rights! We offer free consultations.
Retaliation For Discrimination Complaints Also Prohibited
FEHA and the federal civil rights laws also protect employees from retaliation. This means that FEHA and the federal anti-discrimination laws prohibit discrimination against any employee who has previously complained about workplace discrimination. This includes when an employee complains to a supervisor or human resources, or has filed a complaint with a state or federal agency. An employer cannot demote, transfer, or fire an employee, or otherwise change the terms and conditions of their employment, for making a workplace discrimination complaint.
Several Hypothetical Examples of Workplace Discrimination
Here are some examples of what discrimination in the workplace might look like.
You are a racial minority working at Company X. One day you learn that your manager has promoted several of your co-workers to management positions. All these co-workers are of a different race than you. Furthermore, you have been in your position longer than all of them and have received excellent performance reviews. After doing some research, you discover that your employer has never promoted anyone of your race into a management position.
You are an employee over the age of 40 who applies for a high-level position in your company, but you are not selected. When you ask your boss why you weren’t selected, he tells you that the company needed “young blood” in the position and that you are “too old-fashioned.”
One of your coworkers consistently makes offensive jokes about your physical disability. You’ve asked him to stop, but he replies that you’re just being “too sensitive.” When you go to your manager to get the coworker to stop, she says that he doesn’t really mean to be offensive and is just trying to make you laugh.
Check out our article on disability discrimination in the workplace and how to protect your rights.
You are pregnant. You tell your supervisor that you will need to take leave when you give birth. Your supervisor tells you that working is unhealthy for the baby and that you need to leave your job now if you want to be a good mother.
You have a heart condition of which your employer is aware. As a result, you have ongoing medical appointments that require you to leave work early on occasion. The company hires a new supervisor. The new supervisor writes you up for leaving work early for your medical appointments. You explain to the supervisor that you need these medical appointments for your heart condition and the company has accommodated them previously. The supervisor says that they want healthy employees and continues to write you up despite your explanations.
You apply for medical leave due to a mental health condition with a doctor’s note. Your employer denies your leave. They say that you can’t just claim that you are “depressed” to get time off and if you are really “crazy” then you shouldn’t work there.
These are just a few examples to give you a sense of what unlawful workplace discrimination can look like. However, discrimination in the workplace can appear in a huge variety of forms.
A qualified discrimination lawyer will be familiar with all the signs of employment discrimination and can help you understand what kind of discrimination you have experienced.
Tens of Millions of Dollars Recovered for Our Clients
What Kind of Damages Can You Receive in an Employment Discrimination Case?
Your damages can vary based on the forum you choose to pursue your case in. If you pursue your claim of workplace discrimination with the EEOC, for example, you have a variety of remedies available.
The general goal of these remedies is to help put you in the same situation you would have been in if your employer had not discriminated against you. Specific kinds of remedies can include the following.
As you might expect, compensatory damages are designed to compensate the victim of discrimination for their losses. These losses can be tangible out-of-pocket expenses like the costs of finding another job or lost pay.
Compensatory damages can also include reimbursement for emotional distress, mental anguish, and medical costs related to physical or emotional trauma.
Attorney Fees, Expenses and Costs
Assuming the employee is successful in their case, their attorney can receive reimbursement for their legal costs and fees. This means that the employee does not have to pay their attorney out of pocket.
Courts award punitive damages to prevent especially egregious cases of discrimination from occurring again. If your employer demonstrates recklessness or malicious intent in its discrimination against the employee, they may be liable for punitive damages.
In special cases, other forms of damages are available. The right San Diego employment discrimination lawyer will be able to provide you with more guidance on what kinds of damages might be available in your case.
Should I Hire a San Diego Workplace Discrimination Attorney?
Navigating the ins and outs of the state and federal discrimination laws and procedures can be confusing, especially if you are already feeling helpless from the workplace discrimination you’ve endured. If you plan to report your employer for unfair treatment, you should strongly consider hiring a San Diego workplace discrimination lawyer. However, not all discrimination lawyers are created equal. It’s absolutely essential that you pick a qualified and experienced attorney, with a proven track record of fighting for people just like you. At a minimum, just give us a call to let us know what is happening at your workplace.
Choose the Experienced Litigator, John W. Dalton
At the John W. Dalton Law Offices, we understand how traumatic workplace discrimination can be. Don’t try to fight your employer on your own. Instead, focus on putting your life back together while we help you obtain the compensation you deserve.
John Dalton has over two decades of experience as a discrimination lawyer. He will work with you to understand your rights and legal options. Moreover, he will advocate passionately for your best interests. Even if you still aren’t sure whether you should report your employer for unfair treatment, take a moment to contact us to set up an initial consultation. Don’t wait. Give our San Diego workplace discrimination attorney a call today. We also handle clients with other types of employment cases, including unsettled overtime, wrongful discharge, and sexual misconduct.