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Labor & Employment

Dec 14, 2021

Labor & Employment – Employee stock ownership plan denied windfall

Where the owner of a company sold his shares to the employee stock ownership plan, or ESOP, but the ESOP paid an inflated price for the shares, the owner was liable for the price difference. But, because he forgave certain funds owned by the ESOP for the sale, the damages were offset by this amount. […]

Dec 7, 2021

Labor & Employment – Equal Pay claim turns on wage rate, not total compensation

Where an employee alleges she was paid less than male comparators, courts should only consider an employee’s base salary or wage rate, and not additional compensation like commissions. Background This appeal arises from the district court’s grant of summary judgment to Tactile Systems Technology Inc. on Tracy Sempowich’s discrimination, retaliation and Equal Pay Act claims. […]

Dec 7, 2021

Labor & Employment – WARN Act liability doesn’t extend to non-employer

Where employees constructing a nuclear station alleged the owner violated the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification, or WARN, Act when it halted construction at the facility, the owner wasn’t liable because it wasn’t the plaintiffs’ employer. Background In 2017, SCANA, an electric and natural gas public utility, halted construction at a nuclear station in South […]

Nov 29, 2021

Labor & Employment – Federal employees can’t sue for disparate impact under ADEA

The text, structure and the legal landscape in which the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, or ADEA, was passed law do not support a finding that the statute’s federal-sector provision encompasses disparate-impact liability. Background Dr. Jane DiCocco brought Title VII and Age Discrimination in Employment Act, or ADEA, claims because she failed an allegedly discriminatory […]

Oct 25, 2021

Labor & Employment — Public Employees – School Bus Driver – Unacceptable Personal Conduct – Speeding

Where (1) a witness testified that he saw the petitioner-bus driver driving a school activity bus on the highway at speeds up to 90 mph; (2) in order to make the trip in the time it took petitioner to drive it, she had to be averaging 70 mph; and (3) petitioner acknowledged work rules prohibiting […]

Oct 25, 2021

Labor & Employment — Public Employees – Unacceptable Personal Conduct – Exterminators’ Database – False Information

The petitioner-state employee failed to timely enter a pest control company’s license-renewal application. Subsequently, although a co-worker had already processed the company’s re-application and new check, petitioner overrode multiple failsafe mechanisms in the respondent-department’s database and thereby knowingly entered false information into the database when she asked the IT departmen[...]

Oct 7, 2021

Labor & Employment — Constitutional – First Amendment – Church Pastor – Subject Matter Jurisdiction

In order to rule on the counterclaims filed by defendant—a pastor purportedly fired from his position in the plaintiff-church—the trial court will first need to decide which version of the church’s bylaws was in effect and whether defendant was terminated in accordance with the applicable version of the bylaws. Since the trial court can make […]

Oct 7, 2021

Labor & Employment — Municipal Employment – Constitutional – Fruits of Labor – Due Process & Equal Protection

Where plaintiff alleges that the defendant-city violated its own personnel policies—by giving him only one day instead of at least three days to prepare for a pre-disciplinary hearing—plaintiff has stated a claim under N.C. Const. art. I, § 1 for violation of his right to enjoy the fruits of his own labor. We affirm the […]

Oct 7, 2021

Labor & Employment — Public Employees – Termination – Unacceptable Personal Conduct – Resulting Harm

The respondent-agency fired petitioner, a career state employee, after petitioner—during a conversation with her supervisor—used a racial epithet to describe a client family. Because the agency did not consider the resulting harm from petitioner’s unacceptable personal conduct, the agency’s investigation into the matter was incomplete, and we cannot conduct meaningful appellate review rega[...]

Sep 17, 2021

Labor/Employment – Government contractor not plaintiff’s ‘employer’

Where the government contractor did not supervise plaintiff’s work product, determine her hours or provide her with equipment necessary to perform her duties, it lacked the degree of control over the essential terms and conditions of her work necessary to make it her “employer.” Because the Americans with Disabilities Act, or ADA, does not extend […]

Sep 7, 2021

Labor & Employment –Contract – Non-solicitation Clause – Overbroad – Tort/Negligence – Misappropriation of Trade Secrets

The complaint alleges that defendant Drinkwater’s duties for his former employer, plaintiff Mechanical Systems & Services, Inc. (MSS), were limited to the HVAC field, and that he spent the “overwhelming majority” of his time managing two client accounts in the Charlotte area. Yet the customer non-solicitation clause in Drinkwater’s MSS employment contract purports to bar […]

Aug 31, 2021

Labor/Employment – County must pay winning party’s attorneys’ fees

Where Montgomery County transferred a blind employee to her requested customer service position at a countywide call center after a jury found its failure to do so amounted to discrimination, she was entitled to recover reasonable attorneys’ fees, costs and expenses under the Rehabilitation Act as a “prevailing party.” Background This case stems from Montgomery […]

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