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Bettye Turner opened a securities brokerage account with David Carrick when he was employed with Morgan Stanley Smith Barney. When Carrick moved to Stern, Agee & Leach, Inc. in 2009, Turner signed an Account Application to transfer her funds to a Stern Agee account.
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 protect employees against gender and age discrimination. In order to bring a wrongful termination action against an employer, employees are required to exhaust their administrative remedies. Regina Thomas and Pam Pilgram failed to file a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission when they were terminated for allegedly stealing from their employer Southern Farm Bureau.
New EEOC guidance for employees and health care providers on opioid addiction and employment addresses how the Americans with Disabilities Act protects employees who use legal opioid medications or have past opioid addictions. Current drug users are not protected by the ADA, however, employees who participate in a Medication Assisted Treatment program for opioid addiction are protected.
Confused about how to implement President Trump’s Memorandum on Deferring Payroll Tax Obligations in Light of the Ongoing COVID-19 Disaster? You’re not alone. The Memorandum defers the employee portion of the Social Security tax from September 1 through December 31. It does not say how long the deferment lasts, and employees will still be liable for the taxes unless some action is taken to eliminate those taxes.
Even a company that follows best practices to protect trade secrets is vulnerable to trade-secret thefts. Zoho, a Software-as-a-Service company, followed all the best practices to reduce the accessibility of sensitive information. In 2010, some employees left the company to start their own business, Freshworks. A decade later Zoho filed suit for trade-secret misappropriation.
Franek Olstowski developed an excimer lamp using krypton-chloride to detect sulfur with ultraviolet fluorescence while he was employed by Petroleum Analyzer Co., L.P. He developed the technology on his own time. Later, Olstowski and Petroleum Analyzer discussed a licensing deal but failed to come to an agreement. Petroleum Analyzer filed a lawsuit claiming Olstowski’s technology as its own. The arbitration panel labeled Olstowski as the owner of the technology.
Three years after Gilbert Gonzalez installed siding on Norman Hamilton’s house the house was damaged in a fire. Hamilton and his insurance provider alleged the fire resulted because Gonzalez hammered nails through an electrical wire during the course of his work. Gonzalez’s commercial general liability policy at the time underwritten by Mid-Continent refused to defend or indemnify Gonzalez. Gonzalez sued Mid-Continent.
Acadian Diagnostic Laboratories, L.L.C., (Acadian) and Quality Toxicology, L.L.C., (QT) entered into two agreements to create a reciprocal testing arrangement. In each arrangement, QT was to collect the funds for testing and pay Acadian an agreed-upon percentage. QT, however, failed to pay Acadian the full amount owed. Acadian filed a lawsuit for breach of contract.
Janice Williams worked for MMO Behavioral Health Systems, L.L.C. (MMO) for fourteen years with an unblemished work record. In 2015, Williams took an approved medical leave for bone spurs and plantar fasciitis. Williams claims upon her return to work management began to harass her. On July 5th, 2015, MMO accused Williams of falsifying her timecard and terminated her employment. A year later, Williams brought multiple suits against MMO including a defamation claim.
When a fire destroyed Mariette and Ebert Joachin’s home, they filed a claim with their insurance company. The Joachins, however, were not yet residing in the home, a requirement of their insurance policy. The Joachins filed suit against the insurance agent who sold them the policy. They were honest about not living in the house, and they allege the agent sold them the wrong policy.
Nick Gavrilides, the owner of two restaurants in Lansing, Michigan, claims the Michigan stay-at-home order interfered with the use of his restaurants. He filed a business interruption claim with his insurance company, Michigan Insurance. His policy, however, covered only “direct physical loss or damage to the [insured’s] property”.
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) declined Booking.com B.V.’s application to register “booking.com” on the Principal Register for travel-related services. Booking.com, a digital travel agency, took the case to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia which relied on new evidence in its decision that “Booking.com” was not generic, but instead had acquired secondary meaning. The USPTO appealed to the Fourth Circuit.
In mid-July, Virginia became the first state to issue mandatory COVID-19 workplace safety rules. The decision by the Virginia Safety and Health Codes Board comes after the U.S. Department of Labor and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) declined to propose nationwide safety measures.
Following the 2007-2009 recession, trade secret cases increased to between 7,000 and 9,000 cases per year compared to 770-1,100 per year during the recession. As the United States faces a new economic crisis, companies should prepare for increased trade secret cases in the coming years. Typically these cases start to rise three years after the end of a recession.
According to Tennessee law, when a party involved in a legal dispute moves for summary judgment they bear the burden of submitting evidence to negate the other party’s claims. After Penny Wilson slipped and fell in the parking lot of Weigel Stores, a gas station, the store lost both the witness’s contact information and the surveillance camera video. Wilson filed suit against Weigel for the injuries she sustained in the fall.
On March 4, 2015, the vehicle driven by Jeremy Baird (Jeremy) stuck and killed Angela Gray. The vehicle driven by Jeremy was owned by his father and employer Terry Baird (Mr. Baird). Angela Gray’s husband Shawn Gray filed a wrongful death suit against both Jeremy and Mr. Baird. The trial court granted summary judgment to Mr. Baird. Gray appealed.
As the economy reopens, employers are focused on both keeping their employees and customers safe while returning to business. Before employers implement plans to test employees for COVID-19, they should be aware of the risks. Find best practices and other considerations here.  
Following a storm in Liberty, Mississippi, Allstate Insurance Company contracted with Pilot Catastrophe to inspect and evaluate the damage to the roof of Henry Peak’s house, their insured. Pilot dispatched Michael Cohee to complete the inspection. Following his typical procedure, Cohee climbed on Peak’s roof despite being able to determine rotting in the roof from the ground. Cohee fell through the roof during the inspection and sustained numerous injuries.
In a split decision, the Mississippi Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the Mississippi Workers’ Compensation Commission on a case featuring an injured nurse. Angela Jones, a nurse at Baptist Hospital, alleges she felt a “pop” in her back at the end of her shift on March 21, 2015. Over the next six months, Jones sought care from three different doctors.
Companies in all industries are experiencing supply chain disruptions due to COVID-19. Contracts in place with your customers and suppliers will determine when and how you can terminate the contracts or negotiate payment or credit terms. Contracts which require a supplier or customer to provide indemnification could provide some financial protection. Now’s the time to review your contracts and determine what protections you may have moving forward.

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