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Violation of CFRA Rights

Experienced California Attorneys Representing Employees

Businessman holding briefcase The California Family Rights Act (CFRA) provides job-protected leave to eligible employees faced with certain circumstances related to the addition of a new child to a family. You should not be subject to discrimination, harassment, or retaliation for requesting or taking this leave. If you are concerned about a violation of CFRA rights, you should discuss your situation with the experienced California employment discrimination lawyers at The Nourmand Law Firm.

Violations of CFRA Rights

As a California employee who works for an employer with at least five employees, you may be entitled to job-protected leave under CFRA for your own serious health condition or that of a family member. You must have been employed for a year and worked for at least 1,250 hours in the 12 months before taking leave.

You may be entitled to this leave to bond with a baby or place a new adoptive or foster child. CFRA also allows leave for qualifying reasons related to an employee’s domestic partner, spouse, child, or parent. This is an important shift in the law that went into effect on January 1, 2021. Most employers are now required to provide CFRA leave. It is illegal for your employer to interfere with your CFRA rights, assuming that you are eligible. You should not be terminated or otherwise mistreated for exercising your CFRA rights. For example, if your employer terminates you when your baby is five weeks old because you are on CFRA leave, you may have a basis to sue for damages.

There are various important definitions under CFRA. Family members include sisters, brothers, grandchildren, grandparents, adult children, or partners. Serious health conditions are defined as injuries and illnesses that involve inpatient care or continuing medical care or supervision.

Generally, any illness or injury that incapacitates your family member or you for over three days could count as continuing treatment. For example, if you have severe fibromyalgia and cannot work for a month, you may be eligible for CFRA leave.

Proving a Violation of CFRA Rights

To establish a CFRA rights violation, you will need to show each of the following: (1) you were eligible for family care or medical leave; (2) you asked for leave for a qualifying reason, such as childbirth, bonding with a baby, placement of a child for adoption or foster care, caring for a spouse, parent, or child with a serious health condition, or your own serious health condition that made you unable to perform the functions of your job; (3) you gave reasonable notice to the defendant of your need for family care leave, including how long it would take and when it would happen; (4) your employer refused to grant your request or refused to bring you back into the same or a comparable job when your leave ended; (5) you were harmed; and (6) your employer's actions were a substantial factor in causing your harm. For example, if you needed to care for your spouse, who needed medical care for prostate cancer, and you are eligible for CFRA leave, but your employer of two years denied you leave and threatened to terminate you for taking it, you may be able to establish a violation of CFRA rights.


If our lawyers can establish liability for a CFRA violation, you may be able to recover damages. These damages may include emotional distress damages, past and future lost income and benefits, and sometimes punitive damages.

Consult an Employment Discrimination Lawyer

A violation of CFRA rights can have a big impact on an employee with a serious medical problem or a family as it grows. If your employer denied you CFRA leave, or otherwise treated you adversely for taking leave to which you were entitled, you should consult a seasoned California attorney. The Nourmand Law Firm represents employees in Los Angeles, San Bernardino, and Riverside Counties, as well as Oakland and Sacramento, among other areas. Complete our online form or call us at 310-553-3600.

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