California Employment Law Update

Tag Archives: at-will

Alien Employee Who Was Induced To Come To The U.S. Was Properly Awarded Unpaid Wages

Singh v. Southland Stone, U.S.A., Inc., 186 Cal.App.4th 338 (2010) Gurpreet Singh moved from India to California to work as a general manager for Southland Stone. After Singh resigned and returned to India, he filed suit against Southland and its president (Ravinder S. Johar), alleging various contract and tort claims. The jury awarded Singh more … Continue Reading

Employee Entitled To New Trial After Court Improperly Ruled He Was Terminable At Will

Stillwell v. The Salvation Army, 167 Cal. App. 4th 360 (2008) Arthur Stillwell sued The Salvation Army (“TSA”) for breach of an implied agreement to terminate his employment only for good cause. The jury found that TSA breached an implied agreement with Stillwell and awarded him more than $155,000 – but it also determined that … Continue Reading

“At Will” Language Preserved Employer’s Right To Terminate Without Cause

Dore v. Arnold Worldwide, Inc., 39 Cal. 4th 384 (2006) Brook Dore, who was employed as a management supervisor, countersigned an employment agreement (in the form of a letter) that characterized his employment as “at-will,” which was defined as the right of either party to terminate the employment “at any time.” Although the trial court … Continue Reading

Employee Who Was Induced To Resign Previous Job Was Entitled To Proceed With Fraud Claim

Blitz v. Fluor Enterprises, Inc., 115 Cal. App. 4th 185, 8 Cal. Rptr. 3d 833 (2004) Mr. Blitz had been employed in a financial position at Raytheon in New Jersey for 12 years before he was contacted by a member of Fluor’s management team and offered a job in California. Before resigning his position with Raytheon and … Continue Reading

Newspaper Columnist May Have Been Terminated In Violation Of Public Policy

Ali v. L.A. Focus Publication, 112 Cal. App. 4th 1477 (2003) Najee Ali, who worked as the community affairs columnist for L.A. Focus Publication, was terminated after he expressed support while a guest on a local radio program for Antonio Villaraigosa, a candidate for mayor of Los Angeles, and criticized United States Representative Maxine Waters … Continue Reading

Good Cause Was Not Required To Terminate Independent Contractors Of Insurance Company

Appling v. State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co., 340 F.3d 769 (9th Cir. 2003) The State Farm agents in this case alleged that the company had terminated them in breach of their independent contractor agreements. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of State Farm, and the Ninth Circuit affirmed, holding that the termination … Continue Reading

Employer Did Not Violate Public Policy In Favor Of Self-Defense By Terminating Employee For Fighting

Escalante v. Wilson’s Art Studio, Inc., 109 Cal. App. 4th 692 (2003) Wilson’s Art Studio terminated Hector Escalante’s employment as a printer after he was physically attacked by another employee, but failed to leave the scene, deciding instead to go back to fight. In his wrongful termination lawsuit, Escalante, an at-will employee, alleged that Wilson’s … Continue Reading

Company’s Family Leave Policy Did Not Supersede At-Will Agreement

Tomlinson v. Qualcomm, Inc., 97 Cal. App. 4th 934 (2002) While working on a reduced schedule as part of a family leave of absence, Lona Tomlinson was selected for layoff and terminated. Tomlinson asserted that her termination violated the California Family Rights Act (CFRA), Cal. Gov’t Code § 12945.2, based on her contention that employees who are … Continue Reading
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