JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A former residential services coordinator at a nursing home for developmentally disabled individuals filed an unpaid overtime action too late and failed to prove that the statute of limitations should be extended because her former employer willfully misclassified her as exempt from overtime, a Florida federal judge held June 13 (Maybelle Kirkland-Brown v. Amelia Island Care Center, No. 3:10-cv-1000, M.D. Fla.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 82057).
BUFFALO, N.Y. - A New York federal jury on June 12 returned a $25 million verdict against a steel mill accused of permitting one of its employees to be racially harassed by other workers and then retaliating against the harassed employee when he filed discrimination charges (Elijah Turley v. ISG Lackawanna Inc., et al., No. 06-794, W.D. N.Y.). Subscribers may view the jury verdict available within the full article.
BOSTON - A Puerto Rico Ports Authority (PRPA) employee may proceed with his lawsuit accusing his employer of harassment due to his political ties, the First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled June 13, reversing a trial court's dismissal of the suit (Daniel Grajales, et al. v. Puerto Rico Ports Authority, et al., No. 11-1404, 1st Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 12010).
RAPID CITY, S.D. - A former employee of a Chinese restaurant is entitled to double damages for his former employer's "oppressive and malicious conduct" in failing to pay minimum or overtime wages but is not entitled to all of the attorney fees he was seeking, a South Dakota federal judge held June 12 (Huy Luong v. China Garden and Peter Wai, No. 10-5069, D. S.D.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 81274).
SAN FRANCISCO - A former partner with bankrupt law firm Dewey & Leboeuf on June 12 filed a lawsuit in a California state court against principals in the firm, seeking damages for alleged fraud and contending that the principals deliberately misrepresented the firm's financial condition to attract attorneys to join Dewey (Henry Bunsow v. Steven H. Davis, et al., No. 12-521540, Calif. Super., San Francisco Co.). Subscribers may view the complaint available within the full update.
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - A Florida federal judge on June 11 granted final approval of a $500,000 settlement for former full-time employees of a Florida company who were laid off without the necessary 60 days' written notice (Renae Mowat, et al. v. DJSP Enterprises, Inc., et al., No. 10-62302, S.D. Fla.). Subscribers may view the final order and judgment approving class action settlement available within the full update.
NEW ORLEANS - A Louisiana federal judge on June 8 remanded a wrongful billing case to state court, saying the Employee Retirement Income Security Act did not preempt the plaintiff's claims (Yana Anderson v. Ochsner Health System, et al., No. 11-2236, E.D. La.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 81025).
SEATTLE - A Washington federal judge on June 11 denied summary judgment to a national electronics retailer on a claim filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission alleging that sexual harassment by a store manager created a hostile work environment for a former employee (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. Fry's Electronics, Inc., No. 10-1562, W.D. Wash.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 80677).
FRESNO, Calif. - A California federal magistrate judge on June 11 recommended granting final approval of a $518,000 settlement of a wage-and-hour class complaint filed against a bridal store chain (Estella Schiller, et al. v. David's Bridal, Inc., et al., No. 10-616, E.D. Calif.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 80776).
SAN FRANCISCO - A federal district court erred in granting a long-term disability plan summary judgment under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act in a wrongful denial of benefits case, a majority of the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled June 8 in an unpublished opinion granting summary judgment to the claimant (Pamela Jackson, et al. v. Wilson, Jackson, Goodrich & Sonsini, et al., No. 10-17112, 9th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 11641).
TAMPA, Fla. - Although a former 7-Eleven Inc. employee established a prima facie case of pregnancy discrimination by her employer, the company provided a legitimate, nondiscriminatory reason for firing her, a Florida federal judge held June 7 in granting 7-Eleven summary judgment on all of the woman's claims (Katie M. Selkow v. 7-Eleven, Inc., No. 8:11-cv-456, M.D. Fla.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 79265).
CINCINNATI - A depository bank that allegedly facilitated a third-party administrator's (TPA's) embezzlement from plans governed by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act is not an ERISA fiduciary, and state-law claims against the bank are preempted by ERISA, the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled June 8 in a divided opinion (John C. McLemore, et al. v. Regions Bank, Nos. 10-5480, 10-5491, 6th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 11600).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Civil Service Reform Act (CSRA) precludes district court jurisdiction over claims by federal employees seeking to declare acts of Congress unconstitutional, a split U.S. Supreme Court ruled June 11 (Michael B. Elgin, et al. v. Department of the Treasury, et al., No. 11-45, U.S. Sup.).
PHILADELPHIA - The National Football League has been aware for years of the risks associated with repetitive head impacts during NFL practices and games but "ignored the risks and/or was willfully blind to the risks and/or actively concealed the risks from NFL players," former NFL players and their spouses allege in a master complaint filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania on June 7, the same day a master administrative class action complaint for medical monitoring was filed (In Re National Football League Players' Concussion Injury Litigation, No. 12-2323, E.D. Pa.).
Subscribers may review the master administrative complaint available within the full update. A complimentary copy of the master administration class action complaint for medical monitoring is attached below.
GULFPORT, Miss. - A paralegal's claims that the law firm she worked for illegally failed to pay her overtime contain questions of fact that must be decided at trial, a Mississippi federal judge held June 7 in denying bids for summary judgment by both parties (Cherie Blackmore v. Vaughn & Bowden, P.A., No. 1:10-cv-561, S.D. Miss.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 79027).
PHILADELPHIA - A former hospital employee failed to show that his race, and not harassing his co-workers, caused him to be fired, the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled June 7 (Flakewood Alan Tucker, III v. Thomas Jefferson University, No. 11-1223, 3rd Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 11467).
SAN FRANCISCO - A Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on June 4 withdrew its earlier opinion and ruled, in a divided opinion, that although a health plan governed by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), 29 U.S.C.S. § 1001 et seq. did not cover residential treatment for anorexia nervosa, the plan was required to provide such treatment under California's Mental Health Parity Act "on the same financial terms and conditions it imposes on coverage for physical illnesses" (Jeanene Harlick v. Blue Shield of California, No. 10-15595, 9th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 11222).
CINCINNATI - A Tennessee sales manager failed to prove that a new salary structure constituted age discrimination, the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled June 5, upholding a trial court opinion (John R. Blandford v. Exxon Mobil Corporation d/b/a Exxon Mobil Fuels Marketing Company, No. 10-5795, 6th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 11333).
ST. LOUIS - A University of Missouri nurse failed to prove her allegations that she was paid less than a man who performed essentially the same work under similar working conditions in violation of the Equal Pay Act (EPA), the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled June 6, upholding a trial court ruling (Susan Bauer v. Curators of the University of Missouri, No. 11-2758, 8th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 11375).
PHILADELPHIA - A black emergency medical technician who suffers from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) failed to show that the ambulance company he worked for discriminated against him because of his race but did make a prima facie showing that he was fired because of his disability, a Pennsylvania federal judge held June 5 (Michael McCarty v. Marple Township Ambulance Corps, No. 10-5747, E.D. Pa.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 77519).
ATLANTA - The 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on June 4 joined all its sister courts in recognizing a retaliatory hostile work environment claim (Diane T. Gowski, M.D., et al. v. James Peake, M.D., et al., No. 09-16371, 11th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 11245).
ST. PAUL, Minn. - A former Arkansas state employee's gender discrimination suit against her former supervisors must be rejected because the supervisors are entitled to qualified immunity based on the employee's failure to establish a constitutional violation, the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled June 4, reversing a trial court (Jacobia Twiggs v. John Selig, et al., No. 11-1682, 8th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 11210).
DENVER - A plan administrator's denial of permanent and total disability (PTD) life insurance benefits was arbitrary and capricious under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act when considered in light of the explanation the plan gave at the time of the denial, the 10th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled June 1 in a divided opinion (Tommy E. Spradley v. The Owens-Illinois Hourly Employees Welfare Benefit Plan, No. 10-7100, 10th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 11133).
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - A former employee of a nuclear submarine builder not only failed to establish a prima facie case of disability discrimination against the employer but also failed to show that his firing was pretext for discrimination, a Connecticut federal judge held June 4 in granting the employer summary judgment (Thomas Bellamy v. General Dynamics Corp., Electric Boat Division, No. 3:10-cv-1219, D. Conn.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 76890).
ST. PAUL, Minn. - A former firefighter failed to show that he was the victim of disability discrimination when he was denied multiple promotions, a split Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled June 5 (Scott St. Martin v. City of St. Paul, No. 11-1716, 8th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 11281).