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Are You a Whistleblower? – Case in Point


Case in Point

In our previous article we discussed some of the legal definitions of issues surrounding the Whistleblower Protection Act.  We gave examples of some illegal activities, retaliation and what you can do about it.

This Case in Point will provide you with a real world example of the items we discussed to help you better understand whether you may be a victim of retaliation in your workplace.  If you have questions about your particular situation, however, please do not hesitate to contact our Los Angeles Office to schedule a free consultation with one of our attorneys.

CASE IN POINT:  Here is an example of employer/employee conduct that could give rise to a whistleblower claim to help you determine whether you might be in this or a similar position:

Patrick is a customer service representative at a retail clothing outlet.  He is a victim of domestic violence.  His spouse has been arrested and Patrick has had to take time off from work to recover from his injury and then to attend court hearings related to the case.  His supervisor has begrudgingly given him the time off.

When Patrick returns to work after one of his court hearings, he sees that his shift has been cut and filled by another employer.  He contacts his supervisor to report the ‘mistake’ and is told that there were last minute changes to the schedule and that his shift was cut, due to a lack of customers.   He goes home.

The next week he gets his schedule and sees that every one of the other customer service representatives is being given at least 5 hours of overtime.  Patrick is used to receiving a few hours of overtime each week, especially during this time of year, but sees that not only does he NOT have any scheduled overtime, but that his hours are less than the 40/week he is used to receiving.

Again, he approaches his supervisor and is told that there just wasn’t enough overtime to go around and that it will all even out in the end.  At the end of that week, he receives his paycheck and sees that some of his overtime from the previous week has not been calculated correctly and the amount of his check is incorrect.

He goes to the Labor Commission and files a complaint.  The complaint is eventually substantiated and his employer is ordered to pay the missing amounts.

The next week he is called into his supervisor’s office and is told that the store isn’t doing as well as it normally does and that he is being let go.  Patrick collects his things, goes home and calls our office.

Patrick comes in for a consultation with Mr. Danz.  Mr. Danz and his associates are delighted to discover that Patrick has documented each of the above listed occurrences on his iPad, has taken notes with dates, times, names and subjects of conversations, he has saved copies of work schedules and emails and even has several saved voicemail messages.

Mr. Danz not only accepts Patrick’s case, but also nominates him as Client of the Year and gives him a VIP seat at the firm’s annual Christmas party.

If you, like Patrick, feel that you have been discriminated against, because you have reported illegal activity to your supervisor or to a governmental agency, please contact us immediately so that we can schedule a free consultation to discuss your possible case.

Stephen Danz is California’s largest statewide law firm that’s dedicated to representing employees in disputes against their employers.  Stephen Danz & Associates based in Los Angeles, California, protects clients all over the State from retaliation, discrimination, and harassment involving dismissal, demotion, or denial of accommodation based on age, race, sex, religion, color, sexual orientation, marital status, association, physical or mental disability, or other legally protected classifications.  Additionally we represent employees if they have not been paid the proper wages including overtime or minimum wage, or given the proper meal breaks.  If you believe that you are the victim of discrimination or retaliation because you are a whistleblower, contact our Los Angeles office to set up your free consultation to discuss this matter with our lawyers.  We take cases on a contingency basis and collect no attorney fees unless we win your case.