Carney R. Shegerian, an employee rights attorney and founder of Shegerian & Associates, a Santa Monica-based litigation law firm representing employees, has issued the following statement informing employees of their rights under the “WARN” Act.

On February 19, 2010 the Los Angeles Times reported that in an effort to help address the city’s budget crisis the L.A. City Council has ordered to eliminate 3,000 additional city jobs before July 1 “by any means necessary, including layoffs.”

Shegerian states, “Employees must know that even during a time of layoffs their rights are protected.”

The Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act or “WARN” Act requires companies to provide at least 60 days written notice to employees before a mass layoff (loss of jobs at the employment site during any 30-day period for 500 or more employees, or for 50-499 employees if they make up at least 33% of the employer’s active workforce).

In California this act is applicable to a “covered establishment” with 75 or more employees full or part-time. As under the federal WARN, employees must have been employed for at least 6 months of the 12 months preceding the date of required notice in order to be counted. [California Labor Code Section 1400 (a) and (h)]

Shegerian states, “If you have been laid off as a part of a mass layoff and your employer has not notified you, you are entitled to bring suit into any court of jurisdiction. You may be awarded $500 a day for each day of violation, and/or may receive back pay.Your employer would also be liable for attorney fees and for the cost of any medical expenses incurred by employees that would have been covered under an employee benefit plan.”

An experienced trial attorney, Shegerian has tried many jury trials to verdict in both state and federal court, always representing individuals that have suffered financial or emotional losses and have been wronged by employers, including major corporations. Shegerian has built a remarkable career on helping those who have been wronged in the workplace. He remains undefeated in federal jury trials and has won 14 seven figure verdicts representing employees.