HR as Caesar’s Wife

By Bill Wright An employee rejects a co-worker’s proposal of a physical relationship. The co-worker gets him fired. Is the employer liable for sex discrimination? This is different from earlier cat’s paw cases because the person who caused the discharge was a co-worker, not a supervisor, but according to one court, the standard for employer […]

History + Pretext = Trial

By Bill Wright A history of workplace racial imbalance might undermine your legitimate non-discriminatory reason for a promotion decision. In Ahmed v. Johnson, No. 13-1054 (1st Cir. May 21, 2014), the plaintiff argued he was passed over for promotion because of his race, national origin, or religion. A supervisor, who had recommended three other men […]

Is Use of False SSN Dishonest?

By Lori Phillips Can you refuse to hire an authorized worker – even a U.S. citizen – because once upon a time he used a false Social Security number? In Guerrero v. California Department of Corrections & Rehabilitation, No. C 13-05671 WHA (N.D. Cal. May 7, 2014), the court said, “Maybe not.” The plaintiff came […]

EEOC Targets Another “No-Fault” Attendance Policy

By Bryan Stillwagon On Friday, the EEOC filed a lawsuit against AutoZone targeting the company’s “no fault” attendance policy because of its negative impact on disabled employees requesting accommodations. The suit, EEOC v. Autozone, Inc., No. 1:14-cv-03385 (N.D. Ill.), alleges the company refused to grant accommodations and then fired employees who took additional time off […]

Arizona Court Strikes Down Restrictive Covenants

By John Alan Doran In a notorious case, the Arizona Court of Appeals today struck down Quicken Loans’ non-solicitation covenants and confirmed that the defendants in the case were entitled to recover their attorneys’ fees. Quicken sued seven of its former employees for breaching their non-solicitation covenants when they joined a competitor, loanDepot.  The non-solicitation […]

Whistling Arbitration

By Lori Phillips In Santoro v. Accenture Federal Services, LLC, No. 12-2561 (4th Cir. May 5, 2014), an employee brought ADEA, FMLA and ERISA claims against a former employer.  The employer moved to compel arbitration, and the employee opposed the motion, citing the Dodd-Frank Act – even though the employee had no claim under the […]