Make sure employees receive the leave they’re entitled to under California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA). If a supervisor terminates an employee under the mistaken belief she’s at-will and can be fired for poor attendance—when she’s really eligible for medical leave—fix the mistake immediately.
Recent case: Louise was injured in a car accident. When she returned to work two weeks later, her new boss had already processed paperwork to fire her for.
Louise sued. The jury concluded she was entitled to a medical leave under FEHA and had been terminated for exercising her rights. She won $470,000 in damages.
The company appealed, but the award stood. (Pena v. CFL, No. A134753, California Court of Appeal, 1st Appellate District, 2013)