For those of you who were losing sleep over the allegation that “Storage Wars” is fake, you can now rest easy: one month after former cast member, David Hester, claimed that portions of the show were fake and scripted as part of his wrongful termination lawsuit, the producers of the show, A&E, filed a response denying the former employee’s claims.
Hester alleged he was wrongfully terminated from his position with the show after he raised concerns about the legality of certain activities on the show. However, the producers allege he is just attempting to turn a “garden-variety breach of contract claim into tabloid-worthy drama.”
Specifically, Hester alleges he was fired after stating the producers were engaging in “fraudulent” conduct of “salting” and staging the storage lockers and that this was illegal. A&E contends the main reason Hester was terminated from his job is because he became unsatisfied during contract negotiations.
“In a transparent attempt to distract from the issues and maximize any potential recovery plaintiff’s complaint tries to convert a garden-variety breach of contract claim into a tabloid-worthy drama, in which [the former employee] portrays himself as a crusading whistleblower,” the network said. “But setting aside the notable inconsistencies in his exaggerated self-portrait, the law does not permit such sophistry.”
What does this mean for employers everywhere? Like the show itself, it means nothing. It is noteworthy only for the fact that employment cases continue to generate more headlines than any other area of law except for criminal cases, which is another reason why it pays for employers to take pains to comply with the law and to document the steps taken along the way. Because contrary to what Hollywood-style publicists might tell you, when you are an employer, there is such a thing as bad publicity.
This blog is presented under protest by the law firm of Ervin Cohen & Jessup LLP. It is essentially the random thoughts and opinions of someone who lives in the trenches of the war that often is employment law–he/she may well be a little shell-shocked. So if you are thinking “woohoo, I just landed some free legal advice that will fix all my problems!”, think again. This is commentary people, a sketchy overview of some current legal issue with a dose of humor, but commentary nonetheless; as if Dennis Miller were a lawyer…and still mildly amusing. No legal advice here; you would have to pay real US currency for that (unless you are my mom, and even then there are limits). But feel free to contact us with your questions and comments—who knows, we might even answer you. And if you want to spread this stuff around, feel free to do so, but please keep it in its present form (‘cause you can’t mess with this kind of poetry). Big news: Copyright 2013. All rights reserved; yep, all of them.
If you have any questions regarding this blog or your life in general, contact Kelly O. Scott, Esq. (who else would you contact?), commander in chief of this blog and Head Honcho (official legal title) of ECJ’s Employment Law Department, at (310) 281-6348 or firstname.lastname@example.org.