wrongful termination Tag

https://www.kielichlawfirm.com > Posts tagged "wrongful termination"

Dallas employment attorneys with free consultations?

Dallas employment lawyers sometimes offer free consultations in their Dallas, Texas law firms. Most of the well-known employment attorneys in Dallas and Fort Worth do not offer free consultations. They may charge a fee of $75-300. Some lawyers offer free consultations but these may be personal injury lawyers or other trial attorneys who take on all types of cases. While many of these attorneys are excellent lawyers, they may not have expertise in employment law. Employment lawsuits like wrongful termination, employment discrimination and FMLA claims are very technical. Not having expertise as a Dallas employment lawyer can be harmful to...

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EEOC mediation and lawsuit settlement amounts in Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas

EEOC mediations and lawsuits often end in settlement of claims for employment discrimination in Dallas and Fort Worth, including wrongful termination. An important question for many employees filing employment discrimination claims with the EEOC is what they can expect in a settlement. Many employment discrimination complaints filed with the EEOC in Dallas settle either in mediation with the EEOC or after filing a lawsuit but before trial. Settlements at these two stages happen at critically different stages of an employment discrimination claim so their settlement values are, collectively, different. We will discuss the average EEOC mediation or lawsuit settlement averages...

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Can my Texas employer fire me for doing what my manager told me to do?

Here's a tricky situation: you follow a specific instruction from your manager or a company policy. Then your employer fires you. Can this happen for following orders? Unfortunately, in most cases the answer: yes. Seems bizarre--and it is--but this is the nature of the at-will employment relationship. In an at-will employment relationship the employer can discipline an employee, up to termination, for a bad reason--even no reason at all. The employer can fire you for doing exactly what it instructed you to do. This is among the most glaring proof that the at-will employment relationship is a legal fiction. Texas law treats the at-will employment relationship...

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Dallas Employment Attorney’s 10 Signs You Should Not Take That Job

In a tough job market it's always difficult to turn down a job but sometimes the company culture is so toxic or the boss is so insufferable that it's more harmful to your health and career than the benefit of the paycheck. Of course, that's an easy thing to say when you have a paycheck. Many people go into bad jobs only to quickly find themselves wrongfully terminated or find the job insufferable. It's far better to identify those bad employment opportunities before you commit and forego other job opportunities. I worked a number of jobs before becoming an employment attorney and...

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Difference between attorney and lawyer

People often used the term lawyer and attorney interchangeably in the United States to denote people who work as legal professionals. Most do so without giving much thought as to why our profession has two labels for the same legal job. These terms have slightly different meanings. (And not just because lawyer jokes tend to use the word lawyer and not attorney.) You might also know other terms or phrases used to reference lawyers or attorneys such as counselor, solicitor, barrister, attorney at law, attorney and counselor or special counsel. In this country these terms generally have no specific legal meaning. At...

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Texas Open Carry Law and Your Employment in Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas

On January 1, 2016 the new open carry law goes into effect across Texas. You may have seen coverage of the open carry protests around Arlington, Fort Worth, Dallas and other cities. Much of that coverage was over people openly carrying assault rifles. The new open carry law does not change the status of long guns, rather it extends the rights to carry handguns. Although the open carry law is not explicitly an employment issue it will affect most employees in Texas because most workplaces will becomes subject to open carry rights in addition to existing handgun possession rights in...

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Can I take FMLA leave and leave under the ADA at the same time?

Sometimes an employee has a medical condition or disability that qualifies for FMLA leave and leave under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) as a reasonable accommodation. The issue how to protect the employee's job through protected leave under the ADA and FMLA is complicated. Each law provides a different set of rights to leave and overlap. Employers often get this issue wrong because they are unaware of ADA reasonable accommodation rules or do not understand that the ADA may apply to FMLA leave requests. HR departments may not be staffed with employees who thoroughly understand FMLA and ADA rights. They...

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What is the employment at will doctrine in Texas?

All states except Montana follow the employment at will doctrine for employees. Although the employment at will doctrine governs employment relationships in Texas and most of the country since the days of the Founding Fathers, there is still a great deal of confusion about what this means. Part of the continuing confusion is the growing body of law modifying the employment at will doctrine. Understanding the employment at will doctrine is vital for any employee employed in an at will relationship. Today's post will help unravel some of the confusion, particularly for those who have been wrongfully terminated in Texas. What...

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7 misconceptions about Texas employment law: Dallas employment lawyer

Employment law is probably the area of law most misunderstood of those that affect people on a daily basis. There is a lot of information floating around that is inaccurate or inapplicable to Texas law. Each state has its own set of labor and employment laws. What is true in one state may not be true here in Texas. As an employment lawyer in Texas in Dallas and Fort Worth there is only so much I can do to help people who have been lawfully fired over a misconception of Texas employment law, particularly about wages, overtime, harassment, discrimination and FMLA rights....

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Should I get an arrest record expunged in Texas?

In Texas you can request certain criminal records are destroyed or expunged in what is called an expunction (or sometimes misspelled as expungement). An expunction orders public agencies, such as police departments, courts and the Department of Public Safety, to destroy records. The expunction will also order private entities that house and report this information to destroy their records as well. That is a tremendously powerful remedy for something that could have significant consequences on an individual's employment and housing. As an employment lawyer in Fort Worth and Dallas I thoroughly understand the significance that even a false arrest can have...

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Can you count on the EEOC to file a lawsuit for you in Texas? Fort Worth employment lawyer discusses

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) released its 2014 performance report recently with some disappointing results about how charges of discrimination (the employment discrimination complaints filed with the EEOC) resolve. Of the 88,778 private sector charges filed the EEOC "resolved" 87,442 of those charges. That does not mean a favorable result occurred for the charging party. It just means the EEOC decided whether there was probable cause to say unlawful discrimination occurred. Out of the 87,442 charges resolved, the EEOC mediated 10,221 charges and resolved 7,846 by mediation. However, just 133 charges resulted in litigation filed by the EEOC with 105 of those...

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Can you be fired for playing fantasy football at work in Texas? Fort Worth employment lawyer explains

You may remember a few years ago there was a big kerfuffle about a Fidelity Investments employee in the North Texas who was fired for allegedly discussing fantasy football at work under an anti-gambling policy. Arguments were had whether fantasy football is gambling and whether it was fair that the employee was fired. It went nationwide and the employee received a lot of positive press in the sports media. Eventually he found employment elsewhere in the financial services industry. Employers continue to find themselves at odds with employees who play fantasy football at work and fantasy football seems to hold growing...

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Social media can ruin your employment in Texas

In 2012 I had an article published in the National Law Review regarding social media and workplace harassment claims. In the article I discussed the different approaches courts take to whether they consider social media activity to be within the workplace or beyond the doors of the work site. For hostile work environment claims, it often matters whether activity is part of the work environment or outside activity related to the workplace relationships. We are still seeing different approaches by the courts. We may never hear a single voice from the courts on that issue. However, today's post isn't about whether...

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EEOC lands $180,000 settlement with employer who fired an employee for eating chips

The headline sounds crazier than the facts behind this case, which involves a disability discrimination suit on a wrongful termination. The case arose in a California federal district court against the employer, Walgreens. (The case is EEOC v. Walgreens.) The case involves an employee who broke a workplace rule to avoid a diabetic shock and lost her job. Many employer-side employment lawyers thought this case would easily fall in favor of Walgreens. They were wrong. After the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission prevailed at summary judgment and won the right to take the case before a jury, Walgreens had a change of heart about...

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Fifth Circuit Deals Blow to Overtime Pay with MCA Exemption

This month the federal Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, which hears appeals from Texas, delivered a surprising appellate decision on overtime pay for workers in long haul freight transport in Allen v. Coil Tubing Services, LLC. In this case, the appellate court held that workers could be identified by class in determining whether an exemption to overtime pay applies rather than assessing the individual job responsibilities of the employee. While this may seem like a minor point, it actually has huge implications. You can read the opinion here but I will address the court's new rule and how it affects Texas...

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Racial harassment case recently decided by the Eleventh Circuit

Today's post discusses an interesting case brought in Alabama under a racial harassment or hostile work environment case. This case is Adams v. Austal, U.S.A., LLC and the Eleventh Circuit's appellate court's decision is available here. The appeal deals with whether an employee may rely on evidence that the workplace was objectively hostile that he or she did not personally observe. Hostile work environment in race discrimination lawsuits Among other elements, when an employee brings a claim of unlawful harassment or a hostile work environment under race, sex, or another unlawful basis, that employee must show the workplace is both subjectively and...

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Sarbanes-Oxley retaliation claims apply to employees of contractors according to the Supreme Court

Sarbanes-Oxley, passed in 2002 in the wake of the Enron disaster, includes a protection in Section 806 that employees of a publicly traded company against retaliation for whistleblowing on accounting fraud and other prohibited acts under Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX). Most courts hold that the employees of contractors to public companies are not protected under the act's anti-retaliation provision. Last week, the Supreme Court issued its decision in Lawson v. FMR, LLC and struck the position that Section 806's anti-retaliation protection applies to the employees of contractors and subcontractors of public companies. Retaliation claims in Texas Let's first talk a little about the details of...

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Denton County prevails in racial discrimination appeal: Texas racial discrimination lawyer discusses

Back in 2012, several local Dallas, Fort Worth and Denton media outlets reported a racial discrimination suit involving a prosecutor at the Denton County District Attorney's office and her allegations that an assistant DA, much higher up the food chain, had made racially discriminatory remarks that constituted a hostile work environment. The trial court awarded half a million dollars to the plaintiff and the District Attorney fired the individual who made the comments, his wife and two other lawyers in the office. Denton County appealed the decision to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, who overturned the verdict entirely. How...

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Twerking while working? Probably a bad idea in Texas.

If you have been anywhere near a TV, radio, computer, or even two cans tied to a string, you have heard about or seen footage of Miley Cyrus's performance during the VMA this year. Let's dispense with the details about her performance. Miley Cyrus does not know how to twerk. If Miley Cyrus is your entire world of information about twerking then you may not know any better. However, what she is doing is struggling to be anything fairly called twerking. It's just a twenty year old girl emulating something she saw in a club. It's like the two white girls at...

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What is a wrongful termination or wrongful discharge in Texas employment law?

In Texas we have a very limited interpretation of wrongful termination or wrongful discharge. Texas recognizes only a handful of reasons your termination creates a wrongful discharge or wrongful termination claim. The term “wrongful termination” or “wrongful discharge” include the reasons below. Refusing to engage in a criminal act on behalf of the employer. In these cases, known as Sabine Pilot cases, the employer commands the employee to do something illegal, the employee refuses and then loses her job. It’s a bad idea to force employees to choose between their job and jail so employers cannot discharge employees for refusing to do something illegal....

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