Tag Archives: retaliation

Federal Court Gets Cat Scratch Fever

The “Cat’s Paw” doctrine describes the situation where an employer may be liable for employment decisions based on the discriminatory animus of an employee who influenced — but who did not make — an employment decision.  The phrase comes from an Aesop fable where a conniving monkey convinces a naïve cat to reach into a … Continue Reading

Chopping Down Workplace Cherry Trees

We all recall the myth of George Washington and the Cherry Tree.  Washington told his father that he could not tell a lie and that he had in fact tried to chop down his father’s cherry tree. His father then praised young George and embraced him for his honesty.  A friend recently relayed to me … Continue Reading

True Colors – Can Naming A Paint Color Be A Discriminatory Act?

Benjamin Moore & Co. is an American paint company. A former Benjamin Moore Manager, Clinton Tucker, alleges that the Company is marketing paints with racially insensitive names – his two names as a matter of fact. Tucker claims that Benjamin Moore’s Clinton Brown and Tucker Chocolate paint colors refer to him and that he was fired … Continue Reading

A Busy Week at the Supreme Court – Three Important Decisions for Employers

In the past few days, the United States Supreme Court has issued three decisions that significantly impact employment law. We offer a brief summary of the Court’s decisions and how they impact employers. American Express v. Italian Colors. The case was not an employment law case and dealt with the less-than-sexy issue of arbitration clauses. … Continue Reading

Eleventh Circuit Holds Liquidated Damages Discretionary For FLSA Retaliation

On February 13, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, which has jurisdiction over Florida, ruled that liquidated damages for a retaliation claim under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) are discretionary, and not mandatory. Moore v Appliance Direct, Inc. is the first decision on this issue in the Eleventh Circuit, which also covers Georgia and … Continue Reading

Title VII Retaliation Does Not Cover Complaints About Investigatory Process

In a recent decision, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, which has jurisdiction over Florida, ruled that an employee who was terminated after complaining about the way her employer conducted a sexual harassment investigation did not have a claim for retaliation under Title VII.  Brush v. Sears Holdings Corp. is interesting because the plaintiff, Brush, … Continue Reading

Federal Appellate Court Holds That FMLA Protects A Pre-Eligibility Request for Post-Eligibility Leave

The federal appellate court that covers Florida, the Eleventh Circuit, recently decided what lawyers call a case a first impression – a legal issue that has not been previously ruled on by the court.  The case is Pereda v. Brookdale Senior Living Communities, Inc., and the issue was whether an employee who is not yet … Continue Reading

Reminder: An Office Romance May Be the Root of Retaliation Claim

This year, the Supreme Court allowed an employee to sue his employer for retaliation based on his fiancée’s discrimination complaint.  See Thompson v. North American Stainless, LP 131 S.Ct. 864 (2011).  North American Stainless fired Eric Thompson just three weeks after receiving notice of a charge of discrimination filed by his co-worker and fiancé Mariam … Continue Reading
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