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The End of The Employment Relationship May Be The Beginning of a Legal Claim: Ten Steps to Minimize Exposure of Employee Lawsuits

by Mark J. Swerdlin and Teresa D. Teare Excerpt: Employers small and large face legal claims arising out of employment decisions at an increasing rate. In fact, employee lawsuits rose 400% from 1987-2007. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) reported that the highest number of...

Note to Employers: Avoid the Aggie Way

The end of the college football season frequently brings the terminations of coaches as schools review the season and their programs. Such is the case for Texas A&M. The university fired Mike Sherman as the head football coach on Thursday. The firing, however, will not serve as a model for...

Can My Business in New Jersey Fire an Employee Because of His Off-the-Job Conduct?

With certain exceptions, a business in New Jersey may fire or refuse to hire a person because of his or her lawful, off-duty, political or recreational activities. Specifically, in New Jersey , employers may not refuse to hire or employ any individual and may not discharge from employment or...

Should My Business in New York Offer an Employee the Opportunity to Quit Instead of Being Fired?

Suppose that an employer in New York State has decided (for a legitimate, nondiscriminatory reason) to end its working relationship with a particular worker. Is the employer best off firing the worker outright or, instead, offering the worker the opportunity to quit rather than be fired? In New...

Simply Irresistible: Terminating the Irresistible Attraction

Spouses who work together experience the rewards and challenges that 24 hour contact brings. One of the challenging parts occurs when the husband works closely with other females. In Nelson v. Knight , the Iowa Supreme Court addressed the issue of whether it is sex discrimination for a male employer...

School-Bus Driver Calls Student "Little Bitch" on Facebook, Gets Fired, and Sues?!?

Of course she does. What does the Complaint say? And what can employers take away from it? In her Complaint (copy here ), the (former) school-bus driver claims that, after her shift ended, she privately messaged a student -- someone who never rode her bus -- on Facebook. This student was supposedly...

Keller & Heckman: Wrongful Termination: Mixed Motives and Damages in California (Harris v. City of Santa Monica)

I. THERE ARE MOTIVATIONS AND THEN THERE ARE MOTIVATIONS The Supreme Court of California recently addressed a challenging issue associated with employee wrongful termination actions. The Supreme Court considered the situation where an employee establishes a discriminatory motivation and the employer...

Good News/Bad News for Wrongful Termination - COTW # 135

Another day, another court decision striking down an employee's attempt to bring a "wrongful termination" claim. The Pennsylvania Superior Court case is Mikhail v. Penn. Org. for Women in Early Recovery , 2013 Pa. Super. LEXIS 82 (slated for publication in A.3d) [ an enhanced version...

Fired for Suing an Ex-Employer? Court Rejects Public Policy Claim

Carcorp hired Barry Elam to work in its finance department. A few months into his employment with Carcorp, Elam sued his prior employer, Bob McDorman Chevrolet, claiming that it had wrongfully fired him in retaliation for his cooperating with an investigation by the Ohio Attorney General into fraudulent...

Four Reasons Your Employment Lawyer Thinks Firing Should Be a Last Resort

Last week's post about whether certain employees in the news deserved to be fired , in addition to generating some great comments from readers, got me thinking about firings in general. I don't like to fire people. And I know what you're thinking -- then why in the world is she...

Tips for Handling an Employment Separation

by Faith Alejandro Employment separations are never easy or pleasant, but at times, you may find it necessary and in the best interest of your business. Whether you need to lay off an employee because of the economy or fire someone for cause, the termination process can be challenging. But there are...

The Proper Way to Say Goodbye to Departing Employees

by Mario R. Bordogna At some point, most employers must face the prospect of sitting down with an employee to advise him or her that it’s time for the employment relationship to end. This is frequently a dreaded scenario for employers, and understandably so. Emotions usually run high and legal...

Will The Reason For My Termination Turn Up In A Background Check?

A reader left this question in the comments to my post Loss Prevention is Lying to You . Hey Donna, would you know if for example LP fired a person from a company, would other companies that person applies for be able to see everything that happened between him and the company he got fired from? ...

Calling Your Students "Hoes" Can (and Should) Get You Fired

During the 2007-2008 school year, Ms. Kimble was employed as a cook and cheerleading coach at a high school. In December 2007, she took the cheerleaders on an overnight Christmas party held in a cabin located outside the county. The trip was not approved as was required by district policy. When administration...

Employers, Don’t Commit These 5 Firing Faux Pas!

Do you think you have that employee termination all buttoned up, and no one will be able to challenge you? Defending that EEOC charge will be a slam dunk? No plaintiff’s lawyer in his right mind would represent your soon-to-be-ex employee? Are you sure about that? Can we talk? Don’t...

How to Fire an Employee

Yes, this is a crummy subject, for both sides of the issue. I have yet to meet an employer or HR person who looks forward to that awkward meeting, where they need to pull the plug. Even amicable separations are full of potential anxiety about how to treat each other fairly, while advocating for oneself...

For Want of a Well-Placed Pickle: Will Your Termination Pass the Red-Face Test?

Have you ever refused to eat at fast food sandwich because the pickles were off? Not “off” as in omitted, or “off” as in taste, but “off” as in alignment, or, these pickles are arranged in a triangle and not in a square on my patty? If you answered “yes”...