"Do I have a discrimination lawsuit"?

Asked over 2 years ago - Moreno Valley, CA

I was interviewed at Olive Garden and hired on the spot on 7/10/12. On my app I disclosed all my information, I checked yes on the question pertaining to background(felonies). During my interview I was never asked about it. After being hired I was asked to come in the next day to fill out some papers regarding tax credits, I was asked about my background by an Asst. Mgr. Miguel, he was not present the day before when I was hired. I told him I stated the information on my application. The next day I was called in to speak to the manager I was hired by, when I arrived we spoke about my background. I aIso told him that I stated the information in my original app. He asked if I was on parole I said no, so he asked for my parole agent's name and #. Its been a week and I've called lots of times

Additional information

I've called several times and the Manager hasn't returned any of my calls. He told me that he just needed to verify that I wasn't on parole anymore which I'm not, I haven't worked yet but I was put into the system as an employee the day that I was hired.

Attorney answers (6)

  1. Marilynn Mika Spencer

    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Your potential remedy is better under federal law than state law. An employer may be breaking federal law if it uses an applicant's or employee's arrest or conviction record to make employment decisions. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has new Guidance that states the circumstances under which this kind of discrimination takes place. http://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/wysk/arrest_c...

    I urge you to read through this document. If it applies to your situation, please contact an experienced plaintiffs employment attorney for potential representation. To find a plaintiffs employment attorney in California, please go to the web site of the California Employment Lawyers Association (CELA). CELA is the largest and most influential bar association in the state for attorneys who represent working people. The web site is www.cela.org, and you can search for attorneys by location and practice area.

    I hope you can resolve your situation and wish you the best.

    *** All legal actions have time limits, called statutes of limitation. If you miss the deadline for filing your... more
  2. Christine C McCall


    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . You haven't identified what kind of position you were hired for, nor what kind of offense your felony conviction was for. Both of these are critical for any determination that the use of a conviction to deny employment is unlawful or even suspect. In most cases, it will not be unlawful for an employer to consider a felony conviction in determining the suitability of an applicant for employment. In the cases where that consideration by the employer may be unlawful, it will be most often be (in conjunction with other factors) because of a genuine lack of any potential intersection between the duties of the position and the nature of the crime.

    My responses to questions on Avvo are never intended as legal advice and must not be relied upon as legal advice.... more
  3. Mark Harrison Wagner

    Contributor Level 8


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . Were you fired? when you say you called a few times, does that mean you have never worked and never been paid? I think that is what you are saying, but it is not clear. Perhaps you can update this information.

    For more information, contact me at mark@wagnerlegalgroup.com or (310) 857-5293. You can also view my website at... more
  4. Patrick John Phillips

    Contributor Level 17


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . An employer's conduct is only "discriminatory" pursuant to California law if the employer is motivated by an employee or prospective employee's race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, marital status, sex, age (over 40), or sexual orientation. Unfortunately, this means that refusing to hire someone on the basis of any other characteristic, such as one's criminal record, is not discriminatory or illegal in any way.

    All the best to you moving forward.


    This answer is a general interpretation of the law and is not fact specific to your case. Likewise it does not... more
  5. John Francis Mccarthy

    Contributor Level 10


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . Most employees are at will. Check out this link to see more on that: http://www.californiaemploymentlawfirm.com/at-w...
    But, in California, criminal histories or "rap sheets" compiled by law enforcement agencies are not public record. Only certain employers such as public utilities, law enforcement, security guard firms, and child care facilities have access to this information. (California Penal Code ยงยง11105, 13300) With the advent of computerized court records and arrest information, however, there are private companies that compile virtual "rap sheets."

    Employers need to use caution in checking criminal records. Information offered to the public by web-based information brokers is not always accurate or up to date. This violates both federal and California law when reported as such. Also, in California, an employer may not inquire about a marijuana conviction that is more than two years old.

  6. Barry Franklin Poulson

    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . No way that I can see that "felon" is a protected category in this situation. Therefore, no basis for a discrimination suit. As a wild guess, the managers may have wondered if your snarky answer implied an intent to deceive, or at least a lack of candor, even though you application was accurate.

    We do not have a client/attorney relationship until you make an appointment, we discuss your case face to face, I... more

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