Fourth Circuit Rules USERRA Retaliation Claim Can Go To Trial

In a recent unpublished opinion, Bunting v. Town of Ocean City, the Fourth Circuit partially overturned a grant of summary judgment and allowed the plaintiff to proceed to trial on his USERRA retaliation claim.   USERRA is a federal statute that protects armed service members from being discriminated in employment because of their service.  Like other

Supreme Court Endorses Associational Retaliation Claim

Late last month, in Thompson v. North American Stainless, the Supreme Court  unanimously concluded that firing a worker’s fiancé in retaliation for a sex discrimination claim filed by the worker is itself unlawful retaliation under Title VII.  The anti-retaliation provision of Title VII prohibits any employer action that “well might have dissuaded a reasonable worker

NC Court of Appeals’ Latest Decisions on Workers’ Compensation

The North Carolina Court of Appeals published two opinions on workers’ compensation earlier this month.  The first, Blalock v. Southeastern Materials, involved an award of attorneys’ fees as a sanction for unreasonable defense.  N.C.G.S. § 97-88.1 permits the Industrial Commission to award a plaintiff the costs of his attorneys’ fees if the case had been

NC Court of Appeals Rejects Workers’ Compensation Settlement Agreement

In Kee v. Caromont Health, Inc., the North Carolina Court of Appeals upheld the Industrial Commission’s rejection of a compromise settlement agreement.  The agreement originally reached by the parties involved the defendants paying plaintiff $20,000, the plaintiff resigning from her employment, and the plaintiff releasing all of her employment rights.  After plaintiff refused to sign

NC Court of Appeals Supports Employment Contract Claim

In Lockett v. Sister-2-Sister Solutions, Inc., the North Carolina Court of Appeals reversed the dismissal of a breach of contract claim based on the plaintiff’s employment.  In this case, the plaintiff had an employment contract with the defendant that provided that he could only be fired for cause.  The Court held that “an employment relationship

Recent Fourth Circuit Employment Decisions

The Fourth Circuit has published a couple of opinions on employment law cases in recent weeks.  The first case, Bonds v. Leavitt, concerned a federal employee’s suit against the Department of Health and Human Services, which alleged Title VII claims, retaliation claims under the Whistleblower Protection Act (WPA), and unlawful termination in violation of the

COA Finds Employment Claims Barred by Union Agreement

In Williams v. American Eagle Airlines, the North Carolina Court of Appeals addressed the interplay between union contracts and employment claims.  In this case, the plaintiff had been a part-time fleet service clerk for American Eagle, where she was a member of the Transport Worker’s Union, and was covered by a collective bargaining agreement.  She

Latest COA Decisions on Workers’ Compensation

The North Carolina Court of Appeals published two decisions on workers’ compensation this month.  The first case, Kingston v. Lyon Construction, concerns workers’ compensation liens and third-party recoveries.  The plaintiff was exposed to asbestos on the job and developed illness as a result.  He was awarded workers’ compensation benefits, and brought and settled tort cases