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TURNING EMPLOYER WRONGS INTO EMPLOYEE RIGHTS

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Industrial Injuries

We are pleased to report a very successful 3 days at the California Applicant’ Attorney’s Association meeting in Las Vegas. We were, once again, the ONLY California employment law firm to be featured at the convention display and were honored to be able to meet dozens of California’s leading workman’s compensation lawyers. If you are industrially injured and are seeking representation, please let us know and we will refer you to one of these outstanding California attorneys. Most workman’s compensation attorneys are specialists under California State Bar rules, and have achieved a high degree of expertise and renown in this highly technical field.

If you have suffered discrimination as a result of a work-related injury, please contact us to discuss your rights. Retaliation for filing a workman’s compensation claim (or just trying to get the paperwork from your |Human Resources Department to do it) is prohibited by California’s Labor Code Section 132a. It is critical that any lawsuit filed contained additional allegations such as Government Code discrimination based on physical or mental condition as a recent case held that court jurisdiction under just 132a is limited to the Workman’s Compensation Appeals Board |(WCAB). However, when combined with a lawsuit for termination in violation of public policy and/or discrimination, retaliation or harassment, it can be a significant sword in the injured workman’s arsenal. Your attorney should be prepared to discuss with you each risk associated with a claim under one or more of our laws.

Don’t forget time limits to file your claim! This is referred to as the statute of limitations. While not giving you legal advise in your particular case, and for educational background only, here are some common time periods in which you must act:

1.  Within six months file a Tort Claim with the Governmental Agency for which you work if you claim something beyond statutory discrimination (such as breach of contract, unsafe condition of public property, etc.).

2. Within one year from the last act of like-kind discrimination, file your charge of discrimination with the State of California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH).

3. When you get your right to sue letter (meaning DFEH has closed your file and you have exhausted your administrative remedies), file a lawsuit in state or federal court within one year of the date on your right to sue letter. (There are shorter time limits for EEOC (300 days since last act) and federal court filings. (90 days from receipt of right to sue letter in California as a deferral state).

4. Within two years of your actual termination date (not the date in which you are advised of your forthcoming separation), file for public policy tort termination.

5. Within two years (Code of Civil Procedure 335) for any personal injury based on a common law theory.

6. Within three years for the violation of any statute such as the California Labor Code or California Constitution.

7. Within four years for violation of the Unfair Business Practices Act (penalties available under the act may have a shorter time period for calculating the amount due to you).

6. Within three years of the date of discovery of any fraud committed against you in the course of accepting (say, falsely inducing you to move, which also violates Labor Code 970 and entitles you to double damages under Labor Code 972) employment or during your employment.

Here’s a warning for you that recently cost a potential client dearly: He was told by a well-meaning public servant that his pending work comp claim “tolled” his complaint of discrimination. This is not true! Equitable tolling may possibly take place if someone believes they have properly filed a claim with DFEH or EEOC but for some reason beyond their control the agency did not formally accept the claim. Always make sure you have a claim number from DFEH or EEOC. Also, be aware that these claims are cross-filed with each agency and may result in your having a right to sue in the other agency. Don’t ever abandon a claim if there is a possibility that the other agency still has your claim open on their books.

Currently, over 125 California attorneys rely on Danz & Associates to refer their industrially-injured clients to. We’d be delighted to discuss your case directly with you and work with your current workman’s compensation attorney to achieve a full victory for you. We practice employment law in every major California city including Los Angeles, San Diego, San Bernardino, Bevery Hills, Brentwood, Pasadena, Simi Valley, Fresno, Santa Clara, Sacramento, Bay Area (with offices in San Francisco), Santa Rosa. Our attorneys ONLY practice employment law and there are ALWAYS two attorneys on your team. I’m honored to be one of them!