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August 2017 Archives

Ford to settle harassment, retaliation claims for $10 million

Ford Motor Company has agreed to settle EEOC harassment and retaliation claims for $10.125 million. It has also agreed to a plan for training and monitoring overseen by the federal agency.

The University of California's million dollar error in judgment

In a case that was followed with interest by those in the field of employment law, as well as many employees working in large university systems throughout the country who hold non-academic positions, the University of California (UC) reached a settlement this past May with the U.S. Department of Labor to the tune of $1.3 million for back wages and damages owed to underpaid employees. 

Court upholds the statutory rights of FMLA

Angela McKinley was hired in 2014 as a Production Control Supervisor at one of Rapid Global's client sites, working for FCA. At the time of her hiring, McKinley signed an Employment Agreement which specifically included a statement regarding the amount of time after which any claim or lawsuit that an employee might bring against the company or its subsidiaries -- no more than six months after the date of the action or incident that would be the subject of any claim or lawsuit filed. By signing this employment agreement, an employee waives any alternate statute of limitations that might apply to the filing of any future lawsuit.

Whistleblower cases can result in high money awards

In 2012, a former cardiac surgery physician's assistant at Mercy General Hospital in Sacramento named Ani Chopourian was awarded an incredible sum of $168 million in her harassment suit against the hospital. At the time, this was believed to be the most substantial amount of damages ever awarded to a single plaintiff in a case of workplace harassment in the United States. This case of whistleblower harassment helped set a legal precedent for others who had been harassed after reporting unethical or illegal conduct at their own workplace, showing them that there are legal avenues through which they can seek compensation for their mistreatment.

West Hollywood City Council's Whistleblower Soap Opera

The sordid story of sexual harassment, wiretapping, whistleblowing and retaliation in the West Hollywood City Council that came to be known as "Deputygate" might be one for the books. If you had trouble following the snarled threads of this case, you aren't alone. The case of former council deputy Michelle Rex, who sued the city for wrongful termination following what she felt was a retaliatory firing for her role in reporting the sexual harassment of fellow council deputy, Ian Owens, came to a close on May 19th. However, the culmination of the case will mean little without detailing the twists and turns that led to it.

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