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Azadian Law Group
March 16, 2022

Unfortunately, many people working in all industries in California face discrimination in their workplaces. While the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) uphold strict laws prohibiting workplace discrimination, this behavior persists throughout the state, adversely affecting the lives of many California workers.

If you believe you have been the victim of any type of workplace discrimination in California, it’s vital to not only understand the legal definition of workplace discrimination but also your options for legal recourse after experiencing this type of treatment. An experienced California workplace discrimination attorney is a valuable asset in this situation. Your legal team can help you resolve discriminatory issues in your workplace and secure compensation for any damages an employer has caused.

California workplace discrimination examples

What Is Workplace Discrimination?

The term “workplace discrimination” refers to an employer making job-related decisions such as hiring and firing based on an employee’s protected personal qualities, such as:

  • Race, ethnicity, or national origin.
  • Religious affiliation and spiritual beliefs.
  • Age.
  • Medical status and perceived medical conditions.
  • Sex, sexual orientation, or gender expression.
  • Disability, perceived disability, or the need for reasonable accommodations.
  • Political party affiliation or participation in activist causes.


These are personal qualities protected by the California DFEH and the EEOC laws at the federal level. When an employer engages in discriminatory behavior in the workplace, affected employees have grounds for legal recourse against those employers. Some employers may also face fines and other penalties depending on the scope and severity of their discriminatory actions.

Common Examples of Workplace Discrimination in 2022

Despite robust laws aimed at preventing workplace discrimination in California, many workers throughout all industries still experience unjust mistreatment due to their employers’ discrimination. Some of the most commonly reported examples of workplace discrimination include:

  • Refusal to hire applicants based on race, age, sex, or other personal qualities.
  • Choosing to promote one employee over another based on personal qualities instead of performance.
  • Firing a member of a protected class based on their personal qualities.
  • Denying benefits, special compensation, or other perks to certain employees based on protected personal qualities.
  • Creating a hostile work environment for employees of a protected class.
  • Denying reasonable leave requests based on an employee’s personal identity or status as a member of a protected class.
  • Making an employee’s work schedule unreasonably stressful or untenable based on the employee’s status as a member of a protected class.
  • Exhibiting favoritism based on personal qualities.
  • Denying an employee’s requests for reasonable accommodation related to their status as a member of a protected class, such as refusal to accommodate reasonable religious exemptions to certain policies or accessibility equipment for disabled employees.


Ultimately, workplace discrimination can take many forms, and employers will generally make every effort to disguise their true intentions when discriminating. Therefore, if you believe you have experienced any unjust discrimination in your workplace for any reason, it’s essential to consult an experienced lawyer as soon as possible to determine your best options for resolving the situation effectively.

How Can an Attorney Help With Workplace Discrimination?

Many Californians who experience workplace discrimination lose their jobs and face economic uncertainty due to the prejudiced actions of their employers. In addition, some employees lose their jobs and face other damages without realizing the root cause of these experiences was discrimination until much later. In these situations, legal counsel is an invaluable asset. Your employment attorney can help you hold an employer accountable for discrimination and the damages they inflicted with their discriminatory behavior.

While you can take legal action in response to workplace discrimination, you cannot directly sue your employer for it. The EEOC is the government agency responsible for investigating discrimination and harassment claims, and you must file an EEOC complaint before proceeding with legal action against your employer. The EEOC will review and investigate your claim, issuing you a Notice of Right to Sue if it deems your complaint valid. In severe cases, the EEOC may initiate legal proceedings against an employer at its discretion.

FAQs

Q: How Will California’s Workplace Laws Change in 2022?

A: California recently passed new legislation to increase the minimum wage for California employees. When it comes to workplace discrimination, the California DFEH enforces a wide range of rules and regulations that all employers must follow or face liability for discrimination claims and severe penalties. If you have any concerns about discrimination in your workplace, it’s good to speak with an experienced attorney as soon as possible.

Q: Can I Receive Compensation for Workplace Discrimination?

A: You have the right to hold an employer accountable for discrimination and any economic losses you incurred due to their actions. Most discrimination claims will seek compensation for lost income and benefits. However, employees also have the right to seek compensation for their emotional distress, and employers may be liable for punitive damages and other penalties.

Q: Do I Need a Lawyer to Sue an Employer for Discrimination?

A: While it is technically possible to file a discrimination claim with the EEOC on your own, the process is much easier with the help of an experienced lawyer. Additionally, an attorney can help with a subsequent civil claim against your employer after you have received the Right to Sue from the EEOC.

Q: What If My Employer Denies Discrimination?

A: Employers accused of workplace discrimination typically lean on California’s at-will employment law to justify firing decisions and may employ many excuses to cover their intentions. Your attorney can help you determine how to obtain the evidence you need to prove you were the victim of workplace discrimination, which may include records of correspondence with your employer and statements from your coworkers.

No one should experience workplace discrimination in California, but unfortunately, many people do face discrimination of all kinds from their employers. If you are unsure whether you have grounds for a discrimination claim or need help with an EEOC complaint, the Azadian Law Group, PC, can assist you. Contact us today to schedule a consultation with an experienced California employment lawyer.

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