You might have heard cases where bosses in workplaces have been complete monsters, or you might have suffered personally as an employee. However, if your boss has been horrible towards you, it doesn’t necessarily imply that you can accuse them of employer misconduct.
Your boss can make your life a living hell. But if he follows the federal and state labor laws, you cannot term him as bad or disgusting. And you cannot accuse them of misconduct for adhering to the rules. However, you cannot pull your boss to a court or in front of federal agencies if he fails to adhere to wage and hour laws, which discriminate. If the accusations of serious misconduct, harassment, breach of contract, retaliation, etc., turn out to be true, it can have serious repercussions. All these points are discussed below in detail to give you a fair idea.
Fails to Adhere to Wage and Labor Laws
Employers must abide by certain stringent laws regarding meal breaks, rest breaks, and proper compensation. Though the minimum wage is subject to the law laid down by the state, $7.50 per hour is the minimum wage rate that all employers need to maintain. From January 1, 2008, every non-exempt worker in California must receive the minimum wage of $8.00 for an hour. In comparison to the federal minimum wage, this is more favorable to an employee.
Those who do overtime work, irrespective of the authorization, must receive a wage. And that should match one and a half times the employee’s regular pay rate for their work time. This applies every time the employee’s work hours cross eight hours and up to 12 hours on a workday. Employers also need to give the workers a mealtime. And this should not be less than half an hour for a work time over five hours in a day. However, this does not hold if the employee’s workday does not exceed over six hours. If an employer violates any of these laws, a worker might choose to file a wage claim against them.
Employment discrimination is one of the concerns. But federal and state laws can protect workers from any discrimination in their workplaces. According to the law, an employer cannot discriminate against any worker.
This includes every aspect starting from hiring to providing benefits, compensation, promotion, and termination, citing reasons like an employee’s age, nationality, race, religion, disability, gender, etc. California has anti-discrimination laws in place which protect employees.
Breach of Contract
Though many states follow the principle of employment, an employee is given a contract in several cases. Both the boss and the worker must respect the employment contracts since they are legally bound to do that. In case of any violation of the contract’s provisions, either party can file a lawsuit.
In case of a dangerous condition at the workplace, the employer fails to take cognizance and take necessary steps against it. He might battle the accusation of severe and willful misconduct. Of course, he can be held responsible for gross negligence. You can consider his conduct or actions as quasi-criminal. The employer might have to pay a sum that would come to half the value of the benefits provided if there is an injury. It would comprise disability, vocation, and medical rehabilitation benefits.
Indecent Behavior Or Harassment
Indecent behavior or harassment in the workplace is one of the prevalent misconducts. And this could lead to the employer facing a lawsuit. According to reports, there have been over 12696 such harassment cases in 2009.
According to the law, an employer found to harass an employee or make indecent advances, in any way, irrespective of gender, verbally, or physically can be punished under the law.
You can take an employer to court if he threatens to harass, punish, terminate, or fire or demote you for taking part in a protected activity. What is protected activity? Protected activity is when an employee reports an illicit activity, complains of corporate fraud, refuses to take part in something hazardous, etc. An employer unlawfully retaliating against these can invite legal action.
These six types of employer misconduct can have serious legal implications. An employee can take the employer to court for these, and the law would definitely favor the employee.