Law Office of Jeffrey D. Fulton
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Can your appearance get your fired?

It is reasonable to think that if you show up for work on time and do your job well that you do not have to worry about being fired. Most people in California would feel this way. However, this is not always the case. While there are many laws protecting you from discrimination based on specific things, such as age, disability, race and gender, there are still many unprotected areas.

As AOL reports, many of the things you can get fired for have to do with your appearance. Some are things you have little control over. In some cases, the law may protect you, but more often than not you have no way to fight back. To begin with, your weight could cause you to lose a job. Not only are people fired for being overweight but some employers may fire people for being too skinny. Only if your weight is due to a medical condition would you have grounds for wrongful termination. However, some cities have enacted laws that protect you against weight discrimination, so check local ordinances. 

Your appearance in general could be cause for termination if your employer feels you are too attractive or not attractive enough. The fine line here, though, is if only people of a certain gender, race or ethnicity are being fired. This would be discrimination. In some places, it is even legal to fire you if you are too short. However, many cities have made this illegal. 

The bottom line when it comes to getting fired for your appearance is it cannot be based on any protected factors, such as race. If your employer is equal in firing people based on a specific aspect of their appearance, then in most cases, they can get away with doing it. This information is for education and is not legal advice. 

 

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