Cal Poly Sued for Wrongful Termination….. Again!

California’s wrongful termination is a bit of a sticky topic and requires a lot of documentation and research by a qualified Los Angeles wrongful termination attorney like the ones found at Rager & Yoon – Employment Lawyers. Wrongful termination is based on race, sex, taking pregnancy leave, marital status, and various other reasons. A former Cal Poly employee is currently suing the university for wrongful termination due to being fired for maternity leave.

Pregnancy Discrimination

The former human resources professional claims she was terminated due to her sex, pregnancy status, and medical condition. Sarah Lessing found out she was pregnant five months into her employment with the University. She began having a difficult time medically and took the necessary steps to ask for maternity leave due to complications. Her leave was approved and within a week of beginning the scheduled leave, she was informed of her termination from the university. Lessing feels the termination was due to her pregnancy while the university claims it was due to performance issues. The timing of the situation is slightly suspicious because if she had previously documented performance issues why was she not let go prior to her leave? That is what a discrimination lawyer will need to determine and prove for this case.

Previous Lawsuit

This is not the first time Cal Poly has been sued for wrongful termination. In 2010, a former dean filed a lawsuit against the university for religious and racial discrimination leading to wrongful termination. Mohammad Noori filed several lawsuits once he was demoted from Dean to the professor. In May of 2011, Noori lost one of the lawsuits which were filed against a blogger with the claim of defamation. He was still employed with the university during legal proceedings and was looking to have his previous position reinstated.

California Labor Laws

The biggest arguable fact of the case is that Sarah Lessing was -according to the university- still on her probationary period and was ineligible to take maternity leave. The university policy on maternity leave requires the employment of at least one year before becoming eligible. California law does not allow an employer to terminate an employee due to pregnancy. Employers cannot discriminate against a woman at any point including the hiring process and during employment. Proving pregnancy discrimination requires attorneys to find direct or circumstantial evidence. Direct evidence could be a statement made by the employer related to the woman’s pregnancy status. This is of course very difficult and rare to find but not impossible. Circumstantial evidence is easier to finding and is many times a matter of timing. Examples of circumstantial evidence include not following company termination procedures, suspicious timing, treatment of employees and termination reasons not holding up.

How A Los Angeles Wrongful Termination Attorney Can Help

Los Angeles wrongful termination attorneys can compile the necessary evidence and conduct interviews to substantiate claims. The key for an employee or former employee is to have documented notes of situations when presenting it to the discrimination attorney. This gives the Los Angeles discrimination attorney a starting point for the lawsuit.

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