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socrateaser
socrateaser, Lawyer
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 39043
Experience:  Retired (mostly)
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I was laid off in Aug. 2009 due to budget cuts and the department

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I was laid off in Aug. 2009 due to budget cuts and the department I was in was abolished. I was a 12 year employee and I was union. In my employee handbook and Memorandum of Understanding per the union I should have been able to "bump" back to a lower position that I had held to avoid being laid off. During the layoff meeting it was never offered to me that I could "bump" back down to the position I held earlier. The only options offered to the 3 employees getting laid off were 2 vacant positions that were not even open yet. My question is: do I have a legitimate wrongful termination case, as that was never offered to me or I would still be employed there. Also is there a statute of limitations on something like this? I have until August 21, 2012, to be rehired back which I don't think is going to happen but am I able to receive monetary compensation before that date expires. I have not had very good luck getting my union representative to help me on this matter.
Thank you,
Janine L.
Kelseyville, CA
Kelseyville, CA
Do I have a legitimate wrongful termination case, as that was never offered to me or I would still be employed there?

A: The issue is whether or not there actually was a lower position available at the time of the layoff, and whether or not had you accepted the not yet available position, would it have been provided? The employer would argue that it offered you a different job and you rejected the offer. If the court found this credible, then your wrongful termination wouldn't be wrongful, and you would lose. If the court found that there was a lower position available, then the failure to offer it would have been a breach of contract and you would be able to sue on that basis -- in my opinion.


Also is there a statute of limitations on something like this?

A: A breach of written contract (the MOU) must be brought within four years of the breach (defined as the date of discharge from employment). Cal. Code Civ. Proc. 337(1).

For an employment rights lawyer referral, see this link.

Hope this helps.

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