These days, there are so many different types of jobs in California and all across the United States that it is practically impossible to find two individuals with identical job duties.
Each job has its own physical requirements. While some workers are expected to sit at a computer for 8 hours straight, others are required to stand for hours. There are also the jobs that require workers to lift heavy objects, drive automobiles, operate with dangerous machinery and/or work at heights.
As you can see, some jobs are more hazardous than others, which is why it is vital that you, as a worker, always make sure that your job is not unreasonably dangerous to put you at risk of bodily injury or death.
“Luckily, California offers quite a few protections to employees to ensure their safety in the workplace,” says our California wrongful termination attorney at The Kaufman Law Firm. You need to know your rights, one of which is that you have a right to refuse to do dangerous work.
And if your refusal to perform an unreasonably dangerous work leads to retaliation or wrongful termination, you may be able to sue your employer.
In Los Angeles and all across California, employers are legally required to provide their workers with a safe work environment and have certain safety equipment in place to ensure their workers’ safety. In some cases, employers fail to ensure a safe work environment, while in other cases, employers do not have the required safety equipment in place.
Either way, workers have a right to refuse to perform certain activities at work as long as these activities are unreasonably dangerous. Unless the employer can prove that the workplace conditions or work duties are safe, he or she is prohibited from firing a worker for refusing to do the dangerous work.
Our experienced wrongful termination attorney in Los Angeles explains that if you have a reasonable belief that doing your job may result in imminent danger to your health or life, and your employer does nothing to correct the safety concerns to make the working conditions safer, you have a right to refuse to do the work.
Do take notice of how we used the words “imminent danger” there. That’s because in order to exercise your right to refuse to do dangerous work, the danger must be urgent and there must not be enough time to report the dangerous conditions to the appropriate agencies. Also, there cannot be any reasonable alternative to complete the work without exposing yourself to safety risks.
If your case meets the above-mentioned criteria, and you notify your employer of your refusal to do the dangerous work, your employer will be prohibited from retaliating against you or taking any adverse employment action against you. This includes wrongful termination.
If you get fired for your refusal to do the dangerous work, you may be entitled to pursue a wrongful termination claim against your employer. If the urgency of the hazard does allow it, you can file a complaint with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regarding the dangerous working condition.
In any case, it is always a good idea to consult with a Los Angeles wrongful termination lawyer. Contact our attorneys at The Kaufman Law Firm for a free case evaluation. Call our offices at (310) 981-3404 today.