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In a Summary Order issued today in Mendez-Nouel v. Gucci America, Inc., the Second Circuit affirmed summary judgment for defendant Gucci on plaintiff’s same-sex hostile work environment/sexual harassment and retaliation claims. Harassment/Hostile Work Environment Initially, the Court explained the legal standard for sexual harassment claims: [F]or sexual harassment to be actionable, it must be sufficiently severe…

Read More Second Circuit Affirms Dismissal of Same-Sex Hostile Work Environment/Harassment and Retaliation Claims
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In Romanello v. Intesa Sanpaolo, S.p.A., decided Oct. 10, 2013, the New York Court of Appeals (the state’s highest court) reinstated plaintiff’s disability discrimination claim under the New York City Human Rights Law (NYCHRL) but held that plaintiff’s claim under the New York State Human Rights Law (NYSHRL) was properly dismissed. In doing so, it highlighted crucial…

Read More Plaintiff Suffering From Depression Adequately Stated Disability Discrimination Claim Under New York City Human Rights Law
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In Barahona v. America Recycle, LLC, the New York Supreme Court (Queens County) on Sept. 30, 2013 granted summary judgment to plaintiff passenger, but only as to his alleged culpable conduct. In this two-car accident case, plaintiff alleged that he sustained personal injuries after the car in which he was a passenger (and which was…

Read More Plaintiff Passenger Entitled to Summary Judgment But Only as to His Lack of Comparable Fault
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Winter is coming, along with winter-related hazards. Among them is so-called “black ice“. In a recent slip/fall case, Rodriguez v. Bronx Zoo Restaurant (decided Oct. 1), the Appellate Division, First Department reversed the trial court’s grant of summary judgment to defendants. Plaintiff alleged that she slipped on a patch of black ice on a “dirty or…

Read More Ice Slip/Fall Case Continues in Light of Fact Issues as to Constructive Notice
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Although unpaid interns recently obtained a court victory on the wage and hour front (i.e., a ruling that they are “employees” under federal and state wage/hour laws), Southern District Judge P. Kevin Castel recently issued them a defeat on the discrimination/harassment front. In Wang v. Phoenix Satellite Television US Inc., the court dismissed an intern’s…

Read More Court Holds That Unpaid Interns Are Not Protected From Sexual Harassment Under the New York City Human Rights Law
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The Appellate Division, Second Department recently affirmed (in Paredes v. 1668 Realty Assoc.) summary judgment for plaintiff on his New York Labor Law § 240(1) cause of action. Labor Law § 240(1) is a powerful statute that provides significant protections for injured construction workers in New York.  As explained by the court: The primary purpose…

Read More Masonry Worker Struck By Debris-Filled Bucket Wins on Liability Under Labor Law § 240(1)
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The Northern District of New York recently held, in Wilkie v. The Golub Corp., that a diabetic truck driver (1) failed to exhaust his administrative remedies, and (2) was not a “qualified individual with a disability” under the Americans with Disabilities Act. A physician responsible for performing Department of Transportation (DOT) physicals for truck drivers…

Read More Court Dismisses Diabetic Truck Driver’s Disability Discrimination Claims
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In Doerr v. Goldsmith, the First Department recently allowed plaintiff’s injury claim, arising from an animal encounter, to proceed on a theory of negligence. In sum, the court held that the focus (at least in cases where an allegation of “vicious propensity” is not advanced) is on the dog’s humans, rather than the dog. Plaintiff…

Read More Court Allows Negligence Claim Against Dog’s Owner to Continue
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In Declercq v. WWP Office LLC, 2013 NY Slip Op 51552(U) (N.Y. Sup. Ct. N.Y. Co. Sept. 24, 2013), the court awarded partial summary judgment to plaintiff on his claim that he was injured after falling from a ladder. The court’s decision provides a good overview of the law under Labor Law § 240(1), and in particular…

Read More Employee Who Fell From Ladder While Cleaning Wins On Liability Under New York Labor Law § 240(1)
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In Terry v. County of Cayuga, decided Sept. 30, 2013, the Northern District of New York denied defendant’s motion for summary judgment on plaintiff’s claim that she was subjected to retaliation under the Family and Medical Leave Act. Plaintiff, an attorney, was fired the day she returned from her two-week FMLA leave. The FMLA entitles…

Read More FMLA Retaliation Claim Continues, Despite “Extensive Evidence” of Performance Issues
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