Category Archives: Retaliation

Fifth Circuit Holds That A Supervisor’s Gender Related Comments Are Not “Direct Evidence” Of Gender Discrimination In Pay

In Herster v. Board of Supervisors of Louisiana State Univ., 887 F.3d 177 (5th Cir. 2018), opinion here, the plaintiff, Herster was a female part-time instructor at LSU. LSU had hired her husband at its law school, and then found … Continue reading

Posted in At Will Employment, Discrimination, Houston Employment Law, Houston Executive Lawyer, Houston Retaliation Law, Retaliation, Whistleblower

Fifth Circuit Finds Employee’s FMLA Retaliation Claim Doomed By Proof That Employer Fired The Employee Based On A Good Faith Belief She Had Been Dishonest About Being Unable To Work Due To Illness

In DeVoss v. Southwest Airlines Co., 903 F.3d 487 (5th Cir. 2018), attached here, DeVoss, an airline flight attendant called in late to work and invoked a commuter policy to justify her tardiness. After she was told that the commuter … Continue reading

Posted in At Will Employment, FMLA, Houston Employment Law, Houston Executive Lawyer, Houston Retaliation Law, Retaliation, Uncategorized

Court Holds That Once An Employer Acts With An Illegal, Retaliatory Motive Against An Employee, The Employee’s Mildly Inappropriate Response Is Not Sufficient To Remove The Taint Of Illegal Retaliation

In Fisher v. Lufkin Industries, __ F.3d __, No. 15-40428, 2017 WL 562444 (5th Cir., Feb. 10, 2017), the African-American plaintiff, Fisher, complained to Lufkin’s VP of HR that his supervisor referred to him as “boy,” which he regarded as … Continue reading

Posted in Discrimination, Houston Employment Law, Houston Retaliation Law, Retaliation

Fifth Circuit Holds That Employees Interviewed As Part Of A Sexual Harassment Investigation Have Greater Protection From Retaliation

Mark Oberti writes: Recently, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, which covers Texas, Mississippi, and Louisiana, affirmed that an employee interviewed as part of a company’s internal investigation into sex harassment complaints is protected from retaliation under … Continue reading

Posted in Discrimination, EEOC, Houston Employment Law, Houston Retaliation Law, Retaliation, Whistleblower

Employee Loses Retaliation Claim Based On Coworker’s Use Of The Phrase “Heil Hitler”

Some employees think that any workplace complaints over inappropriate conduct or statements are protected from retaliation — meaning that the employer cannot retaliate against them for making such complaints. But, the law is actually far different, as illustrated by a … Continue reading

Posted in EEOC, Houston Retaliation Law, Retaliation

Fifth Circuit Holds That A Manager’s Threat To Reduce An Employee’s Pay In Retaliation For the Employee’s Hiring Of A Transgendered Employee Was Not An Adverse Employment Action That The Threatened Employee Could Sue Over

In a case decided in December 2015, Brandon v. Sage Corp., 808 F.3d 266, 270 (5th Cir. 2015), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit addressed a retaliation claim brought by the plaintiff Brandon, the former Director of … Continue reading

Posted in EEOC, Houston Retaliation Law, Retaliation, Uncategorized

Fifth Circuit Says Dodd-Frank’s Anti-Retaliation Provision Only Covers Employees Who Provide Information To the SEC — Rejecting Many Other Cases To the Contrary

The Fifth Circuit issued a decision on July 17, 2013, that limits Dodd-Frank’s anti-retalition provision’s coverage to employees who provide information to the SEC. In doing so, it rejected numerous other court decisions that held to the contrary. By way … Continue reading

Posted in Dodd Frank, Houston Retaliation Law, Retaliation, SOX, Whistleblower

Severance Agreements And Retaliation (Part II)

In our post yesterday we discussed the pro-employee case of EEOC v. Lockheed Martin, 444 F. Supp. 2d 414 (D. Md. 2006). The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a more employer-favorable decision on the issue in EEOC v. Sundance … Continue reading

Posted in Houston Employment Law, Houston Retaliation Law, Retaliation, Separation Agreements | Tagged ,

Severance Agreements And Retaliation (Part I)

Employers must be careful with how their severance and release agreements are drafted, both to ensure they are effective, and that they do not stimulate retaliation claims. An extreme example is EEOC v. Lockheed Martin, 444 F. Supp. 2d 414 … Continue reading

Posted in Houston Employment Law, Houston Retaliation Law, Retaliation, Separation Agreements | Tagged ,

If An Employee Engages In More Protected Activity After An Employer Takes Some Action Against Him or Her, Is The Employer’s Action Materially Adverse?

Our paper addresses this interesting question. An employer’s actions are “materially adverse” – and thus actionable as retaliation – if they are “harmful to the point that they could well dissuade a reasonable worker from making or supporting a charge … Continue reading

Posted in Houston Employment Law, Houston Retaliation Law, Retaliation | Tagged ,