2013

Oral argument is scheduled in the Supreme Court today in the case of Lawson and Zang v. FMR, LLC (information here).  The decision below is Lawson v. FMR, LLC, 670 F.3d 1 (1st Cir. 2012). The case concerns the scope of protection provided by the “whistleblower” section (Section 806) of the federal Sarbanes-Oxley Act, 18 U.S.C.…

Read More SCOTUS Hears Oral Argument on Whether the Sarbanes-Oxley Act Protects Employees of Privately-Held Contractors or Subcontractors of Public Companies
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In Matthews v. 400 Fifth Realty LLC, the Appellate Division, First Department reinstated plaintiff’s claims under Labor Law §§ 200 and 240(1).There, plaintiff was injured when a metal grate fell on him while he was working in the elevator shaft of a building owned by defendant 400 Fifth Realty. As to plaintiff’s Labor Law § 240(1) claim, the…

Read More Plaintiff Wins Under § 240(1) in “Falling Object” Case; No Requirement That Object Fell While Being Hoisted or Secured
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In a recent decision, Grevelding v. State of New York (No. 2013-018-439, Claim No. 109855), the Court of Claims – the court having exclusive jurisdiction over lawsuits against the State of New York – assessed damages arising from the tragic automobile-related death of Jason Rhoades. Mr. Rhoades died when his car “vaulted” off a bridge…

Read More Court Explains $14 Million Award in Auto Accident Wrongful Death Case, Including Damages for “Pre-Impact Terror”
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Here is the race and national origin discrimination lawsuit filed on November 6, 2013 by Moselle Blanco against Alexander McQueen Trading Ltd., Max Cantey, and Monique Hagan. Plaintiff alleges, for example, that her co-worker Max Cantey subjected her to racially derogatory remarks (such as calling her “taco smoke” and “burrito face” and saying that she “had…

Read More Race and National Origin Discrimination Lawsuit Against Alexander McQueen Trading Ltd.
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In Morales v. New York City Housing Authority, plaintiff sued to recover for injuries he sustained after he slipped on a liquid or slippery substance (possibly urine) and fell down the stairs in a building owned and operated by defendants. The court (New York Supreme Court, Kings County) denied defendants’ motion for summary judgment. Initially,…

Read More Slip/Fall Case Proceeds Due to Defendants’ Failure to Demonstrate Sufficient Cleaning and Inspection
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Plaintiff and former school principal Michelle Askin alleged in a discrimination lawsuit that she was “subjected to unfair and excessive scrutiny and reprimands during 2010 to 2011, including an investigation into allegations of misconduct” and then terminated.  At the time, plaintiff was 54 and served as the principal of a school she had founded. In…

Read More Age Discrimination Complaint Against Dept. of Education Dismissed; No “Inference of Discrimination”
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In Kulaya v. Dunbar Armored, Inc., the Appellate Division, Second Department affirmed summary judgment for defendant on plaintiff’s disability discrimination claim under the New York State Human Rights Law. It recited the legal standard: To state a prima facie case of employment discrimination due to a disability under [the New York State Human Rights Law, codified…

Read More No Disability Discrimination Where Plaintiff Failed to Show That Position Remained Available
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A recent Second Circuit decision, Albert-Roberts v. GGG Construction (Summary Order), illustrates that the workplace utterance of even the most arguably vile racial slur (“nigger”) is not necessarily sufficient to support a hostile work environment claim. Plaintiff, who was employed by GGG as a part-time, nighttime office cleaner, alleged that she was subjected to a hostile…

Read More Co-Worker’s Use of Racial Slur Did Not Support Hostile Work Environment Claim; Timing of Outsourcing Decision Resulted in Dismissal of Retaliation Claim
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In Huertas v. UPS, plaintiff (a TJ Maxx employee) sued United Parcel Service (UPS) for injuries sustained when she tripped and fell over stacked boxes left by UPS. The court awarded summary judgment to defendant and dismissed plaintiff’s complaint. Plaintiff testified: I said to the UPS guy, please put the boxes on the counter. We don’t…

Read More Claims Arising From Trip on UPS Packages Not Prempted; UPS Not Liable Due to Absence of Duty
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