Summary Judgment Hiring & Firing

News & Analysis as of

Evidence That Younger Employees Violated Company Policy Without Consequences Results in Denial of Summary Judgment

In light of evidence that younger employees committed similar infractions as the plaintiff, and did not suffer significant disciplinary action, an Illinois federal district court denied an employer’s summary judgment motion....more

Arkansas Federal Court: Failure to Accommodate, in and of Itself, Violates the ADA

Despite the lack of a clear causal connection between an employer’s failure to grant an employee’s request for additional training and its decision to terminate her employment, an Arkansas federal district court recently...more

Third Circuit Permits ADEA “Subgroup” Claims

The Third Circuit recently held in Karlo v. Pittsburgh Glass Works, LLC, No. 15-3435, 2017 WL 83385 (3d Cir. Jan. 10, 2017), that workers in their 50s may be recognized as a “subgroup” of employees protected by the Age...more

Third Circuit Rules "Subgroup" Disparate Impact Claims Are Cognizable Under the ADEA

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit recently became the first appellate court to find that so-called “subgroup” disparate impact claims are cognizable under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), which...more

Employee’s Retaliation and Hostile Work Environment Claims Based on a Rumor Spread in the Workplace Survives Motion for Summary...

In Baez v. Anne Fontaine USA, Inc., the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York denied an employer’s motion for summary judgment to dismiss a terminated employee’s retaliation claims under Title...more

Three Point Shot - February 2017

Ski Manufacturer Chills Bode Miller's Comeback - World champion skier and six-time Olympic medalist Samuel "Bode" Miller had his eye on coming out of retirement for the 2016-17 season before a contract dispute with his...more

Termination Clause Enforced: Oudin and the Supreme Court of Canada

In Canada, termination clauses in employment agreements are critical tools that allow an employer to avoid providing reasonable notice of termination under the common law.  Each year there are numerous court decisions on this...more

Anxiety, Absenteeism, and the ADA

As accommodating and flexible as the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compels employers to be, the harsh reality is that there are some jobs that a person with certain disabilities simply cannot do. When an employee...more

Indiana Court of Appeals Allows Negligent Hiring Claim Despite Admission that Employee Acted Within Scope of Employment

The Indiana Court of Appeals recently determined that a negligent hiring claim against Pizza Hut can continue to move through the trial court after finding that the trial court erred when it granted summary judgment in favor...more

Texas Appellate Court Holds Condition Subsequent in Noncompete Agreement Excused Former Employee’s Competitive Activities

A Texas Court of Appeals affirmed a summary judgment last month in favor of an ex-employee declaring that a noncompete clause in an asset purchase agreement and separate noncompete agreement did not bar him from competing...more

Third Circuit Clarifies Plaintiff’s Burden of Proof for USERRA Claims

Seyfarth Synopsis: The Third Circuit held that, in a failure-to-promote USERRA case, plaintiffs need not plead or prove that they are objectively qualified for the position sought in order to meet their initial burden of...more

Causation Counts: Strategic Use of Summary Judgment Post-Spokeo

Early scorecards in the aftermath of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Spokeo Inc. v. Robins all note high marks in the plaintiffs’ column, especially at the motion to dismiss stage. Emboldened by these decisions,...more

EMTALA Anti-Retaliation Rule Narrower Than You Might Think

Regional Care Hospital fired Marie Gillispie because she was outspoken in telling hospital management that it was required to report an incident of patient dumping and had violated EMTALA by failing to do so. At least that’s...more

Finally! Something That's Not "Protected Activity" in California

It turns out that “protected activity” sufficient to make out a retaliation claim in California is not as broad as it may sometimes seem. On November 9, 2016, the Court of Appeal affirmed summary judgment for the employer in...more

Employers May Need To Offer Accomodations To Job Applicants And EMPLOYEES Even If They Do Not Ask For An Accomodation

Most employers maintain either formal or informal grooming and appearance policies. These policies address the employee’s personal appearance while at work including hairstyle, jewelry, tattoos, piercings, head coverings and...more

Did You Know…SCOTUS Ruling on Personnel Decision based upon Perceived Political Affiliation Impacts Public Employers

The U.S. Supreme Court recently ruled on a matter involving “perceived affiliation”, bringing clarity to the matter, where the circuits provided discordant rulings. As a result, personnel actions based upon even mistaken...more

E.D. Pennsylvania Limits Protected Activity Under SOX

In Westawski v. Merck & Co., No. 14-cv-3239 (E.D. Pa. Oct. 18, 2016), the Eastern District of Pennsylvania granted Defendant Merck & Co. (Company) summary judgment on Plaintiff Joni Westawski’s (Plaintiff) SOX whistleblower...more

Seventh Circuit Issues Ruling Interpreting False Claim Act Whistleblower Amendments

The Seventh Circuit recently issued a decision interpreting the anti-retaliation provisions of the False Claims Act (FCA). The decision provides important clarifications about how courts may interpret recent amendments to...more

Fifth Circuit Flips Grant Of Summary Judgment Against EEOC in ADA Case

Seyfarth Synopsis: In an ADA action regarding disability discrimination, the Fifth Circuit reversed a District Court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of the employer and against the EEOC, noting that even though the...more

Minnesota Employer Had No Duty to Find New Position for Older Worker, Eighth Circuit Holds

A 63-year-old employee, who had worked in an administrative capacity for her employer for 12 years, was told that her position had been eliminated due to a customer-commissioned audit of the company’s services and recommended...more

Kiss Your Retaliation Suit Hello: Company Faces Trial after Changing Explanation for Firing

When an employee brings a lawsuit alleging that his employer retaliated or discriminated against him, courts typically assess the claim by using a burden-shifting approach. Under this approach, after the employer offers a...more

Just What The Doctor Ordered: Court Denies The EEOC’s Motion For Summary Judgment In ADA Suit Regarding Employer’s Wellness...

Seyfarth Synopsis: After the EEOC brought an action under the Americans With Disabilities Act against an employer who implemented a wellness program requiring employees to take a health assessment to participate, the Court...more

Tenth Circuit Decision Shows How Employers Can Deal with Performance Problems Discovered with Employees on Leave

Employees on approved Family and Medical Leave are entitled to reinstatement upon return to the same or an equivalent position. Commonly, when the employee is absent on leave, the employer discovers work performance issues...more

A Rose by Any Other Name is Not as Sweet: When a Non-Solicit is Actually a Non-Compete

The Ontario Court of Appeal has held that the words “accept business”, in what the employer intended to be a non-solicitation clause, served to restrict competition and is therefore not merely a non-solicitation...more

Seventh Circuit to Plaintiffs: Here's Your Burden of Proof

Most employees who file employment discrimination claims hope for one of two things – a really sympathetic jury or an employer that is willing to generously settle the lawsuit to avoid the risks and uncertainties of trial. ...more

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