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Texas Employment Lawyer

Discrimination, Retaliation, Wrongful Termination, and Unpaid Wages

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Four references to an employee’s protected activity during a much longer meeting where multiple subjects were discussed is sufficient to create a fact issue as to causation.

Posted in Retaliation

“While it is true that these statements are few in number, and that much of the meeting was spent discussing other subjects, their number does not strip the statements of their status as evidence.  After a court draws the negative inference that Sheriff Cutler was negatively referencing Haverda’s letter to the editor, the amount of… Continue Reading

To establish the third element of a prima facie case for retaliation under Title VII, a plaintiff must ultimately present evidence that there is a causal link between the protected activity and the adverse employment action.

Posted in Retaliation

“A review of her pleadings reflects that [Employee] has alleged that she has worked for [Employer] since 1988, she encountered no problems in the workplace until she was listed as a witness in [Co-worker]’s complaint in July 2008, and, shortly after being listed as a witness in the legal action [Co-worker] filed in state court… Continue Reading

Global statement that company did not fire any employee for complaining about wages is not a legitimate non-retaliatory reason.

Posted in Retaliation, Unpaid wages

“Defendants cite the following global statement in both declarations: ‘SDT did not fire anyone for complaining about not getting paid for all time worked.’  Neither [Defendant] mentions [Plaintiff] by name, nor do Defendants identify any other evidence to establish the basis for [Plaintiff’s] termination.  The Court finds this evidence insufficient to establish a legitimate, non-retaliatory… Continue Reading

Plaintiff’s inconsistent statements when reporting the circumstances surrounding a job related personal injury does not preclude Plaintiff from asserting a claim of retaliatory termination, when there is evidence of impaired thought processes.

Posted in Retaliation

“[Plaintiff] claims his thought processes and memory were impaired following the accident because of the injuries he sustained in it. His testimony is corroborated by testimony from his wife and one co-worker. Because it is not disputed that [Plaintiff] sustained some injuries to his head, his claims are not intrinsically unbelievable. While the fact that… Continue Reading

A time lapse of five (5) to six (6) months does not negate a causal connection between an employee’s engagement in a protected activity and her discharge.

Posted in Retaliation

“The Fifth Circuit has suggested that an extended gap of time between the plaintiff engaging in a protected activity and an adverse employment action can cut against a finding of retaliation. Mayberry v. Vought Aircraft Co., 55 F.3d 1086, 1092 (5th Cir. 1995) (noting that an interval of several years between the adverse action and engaging in a protected… Continue Reading

In Section 1983 first amendment retaliation case, membership in a political association is considered speech protected by the first amendment.

Posted in Retaliation

“The content—support for Kaelin’s opponent—and form—participation in a PAC—of the speech at issue clearly support the notion that it involved matters of public concern, as we have previously held that there can be no question that . . . associating with political organizations and campaigning for a political candidate related to a matter of public… Continue Reading

Testimony of an employer’s statements evincing retaliatory animus are regarded as direct evidence, and no further inference to determine retaliatory intent is required.

Posted in Retaliation

“The Court finds that [Supervisor]’s unambiguous statement that Plaintiff ‘didn’t do anything wrong, but [he] filed that Complaint,’ recalled by both Plaintiff and a co-worker, amounts to direct evidence of retaliation sufficient to defeat summary judgment. Had [Supervisor] said something more along the lines of, ‘I did not vote to promote you because you filed… Continue Reading

Evidence demonstrating the falsity of the defendant’s explanation, taken together with the prima facie case, is likely to support an inference of discrimination even without further evidence of the defendant’s motive.

Posted in Retaliation

“When asked why Plaintiff’s position was eliminated, as opposed to one of the workers in the maintenance department, Childress testified that the District was ‘making decisions based on cost savings.’  Plaintiff points out that none of the other employees laid off as a result of the reduction in force were terminated after the 2010 through 2011 academic… Continue Reading

Terminating an employee within twenty-four hours of filing an initial Charge of Discrimination with the EEOC is evidence of retaliation by an employer.

Posted in Retaliation

“In her complaint, Plaintiff alleges that she engaged in a protected activity when she filed a charge with the EEOC, that she was terminated immediately, and that her filing of the charge caused her termination.  Given the proximity of the termination to the charge, it is reasonable to infer at this stage of the litigation… Continue Reading

Statements indicating spitefulness for reporting discrimination is evidence of pretext because it shows motive.

Posted in Race Discrimination, Retaliation

“[Plaintiff] claims that the Disciplinary Warning was issued in retaliation for his reporting of Cooper’s racially hostile statements. [Defendant] asserts that the warning issued because Willis demonstrated a ‘lack of good judgment’ and a ‘lack of respect for others’ when he sent the mass email disclosing that his co-worker son overdosed on pills. But [Plaintiff]… Continue Reading

Employee’s allegations in her complaint that she worked for multiple related entities with combined more than fifteen employees is sufficient to defeat a motion to dismiss.

Posted in Retaliation

“In conducting this analysis, the court confines itself to the complaint and does not consider the defendants’ affidavit attached to the motion.  In her complaint, Henderson asserts she was employed as a customer service representative by all three defendants….  She alleges that defendant entities employed more than fifteen employees….  Taking these assertions s true and… Continue Reading

Threatening a witness to alter their version of the facts by implying their job is at risk is evidence of pretext in fabricating a reason to terminate the employee.

Posted in Retaliation

“Plaintiffs noted that during his second interview, Rick Mills asked Walsh such questions as, ‘How much do you value your job? Do you value your job over your friendship with Jody?…  These actions by Tower can be reasonably perceived as pressuring Walsh into altering the truth to secure its desire to find no supporting evidence… Continue Reading

An employee does not have to identify the specific instances of sexual harassment or retaliation in the charge of discrimination to exhaust administrative remedies.

Posted in Discrimination, Retaliation, Sexual Harassment

“Plaintiff provided notice to the TWC that Dr. Decherd was sexually harassing her and that she complained to her supervisor of the alleged conduct. Plaintiff was not required to specifically detail each and every instance of sexually harassing conduct allegedly engaged in by Dr. Decherd.” Sanders v. Christus Santa Rosa PASC, 13-CV-250, 2014 WL 201071… Continue Reading

Evidence of retaliation and hostile work environment in an ADA claim include failure to accommodate plaintiff for heavy lifting, placing plaintiff in a position requiring more physical exertion, and terminating plaintiff for inability to perform job tasks requiring more physical exertion.

Posted in Disability discrimination, Discrimination, Retaliation

“Requesting reasonable accommodations is generally a protected activity against retaliation under the ADA; however, first a plaintiff must have a good faith belief that he or she was disabled or perceived as disabled.” Williams v. Rocktenn, 2013 WL 5960671 at *14 (W.D. La. November 6, 2013) (Trimble, J.).  … Continue Reading

To defeat a motion to dismiss, an employee is not required to show that their supervisor employed or terminated the employee; rather, evidence that the supervisor otherwise retaliated against the employee is sufficient.

Posted in Retaliation

“Section 301 of the Texas Occupations Code provided: ‘[A] person may not suspend or terminate the employment of, or otherwise discipline or discriminate against, a person who reports, without malice, under this section.’  Thus, wrongful termination is not a necessary element for Plaintiffs to assert a claim under section 301.  Plaintiffs have alleged that in… Continue Reading

Temporal proximity of complaints and an employee’s termination is sufficient evidence of motivation.

Posted in Retaliation

“Close timing between an employee’s protected activity and an adverse action against her may provide a sufficient causal connection necessary for a showing of retaliation.” A&L Industrial Services Inc. v. Oatis, 2013 WL 5970933 at *14 (Tex. App.—Houston [1st Dist.], no pet.  November 7, 2013) (Huddle, Jennings, and Massengale, JJ.).… Continue Reading

In determining whether an employee’s rebuttal precludes summary judgment, courts look to see whether an employer’s reason for discrimination or termination was pretextual.

Posted in Discrimination, Retaliation

“Pretext may be shown ‘either through evidence of disparate treatment or by showing that the employer’s proffered explanation is false or unworthy of credence.” Hoffman v. Baylor Health Care System, 2014 WL 772672 at *2 (N.D. Tex. February 27, 2014) (Lindsay, J.) (quoting Jackson v. Cal-Western Packaging Corp., 602 F.3d 374, 378 (5th Cir. March… Continue Reading

Formal reprimands that lead to termination or directly affect an employee’s compensation and or benefits may constitute an ultimate employment decision, and therefore adverse action.

Posted in Retaliation

“Denial of ‘administrative complaints and internal grievances,’ as well as informal criticisms, or changing an employee’s work schedule or hours are ‘merely administrative decisions’ that do not constitute an ‘ultimate employment decision’ as contemplated by Title VII.” Williams v. Shred-It, 2013 WL 596110 at *4 (E.D. La. November 7, 2013) (Roby, J.).  … Continue Reading

Being removed from projects, relieved of managerial responsibility, and transferred to another department constitute adverse employment actions in a retaliation case.

Posted in Retaliation

“Plaintiff has presented evidence that raises a genuine issue of material fact in support of her claim…. Plaintiff has presented evidence that after execution of the Settlement Agreement, all managerial responsibilities included in her job description were removed.” Nguyen v. Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County, 2013 WL 4506001 at *3 (S.D. Tex. August 22,… Continue Reading

Protected activity is taken against an entity, not a person, and therefore others in the corporation may retaliate if they have knowledge of the activity.

Posted in Retaliation

“The 2008 EEOC Charge was against [Defendant], not [alleged harasser].  It was [Defendant], not [alleged harasser], who entered into the settlement agreement to increase Plaintiff’s annual gross compensation, to pay her a lump sum, to raise her grade classification, and to pay her attorney’s fees.  Plaintiff has presented credible evidence that [Defendant]’s executives and managers… Continue Reading