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March 2017 Archives

Egan v. Delaware River Port Authority, No. 16-1471, and Carvalho-Grevious v. Delaware State Univ., No. 15-3521 (3d Cir. Mar. 21, 2017)

The Third Circuit on Tuesday took up the issue of causation, and the amount of proof a plaintiff must present, under two federal anti-retaliation laws. In Egan, the panel holds that employees may pursue FMLA retaliation claims under a mixed-motive theory, as supported by a Department of Labor regulation. In Carvalho-Grevious, the court announces a lowered bar for establishing Title VII retaliation at the prima facie stage.

General Counsel as Whistleblowers: Lessons from the Bio-Rad Case

Last month, a federal jury in San Francisco awarded $8 million to a former general counsel for life sciences company Bio-Rad who was terminated after raising concerns about possible Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) violations by his employer. The verdict sent shockwaves through the legal community as it redefines the boundaries of general counsel privilege, and may spur others to act as whistleblowers themselves.

Caldwell v. KHOU-TV, No. 16-20408 (5th Cir. Mar. 6, 2017)

One way that an employee can circumstantially prove discrimination is by showing that the employer offered shifting and inconsistent rationales for its adverse action. The Fifth Circuit returns this ADA and FMLA retaliation case back for a jury to decide on just that rationale.

Can You Be Fired for Political Social Media Posts?

Political discussions seem to be happening everywhere today. And, more often than not, they can get quite heated. From tense family dinner tables to disagreements with complete strangers, people are voicing their opinions - loudly.

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