Blog - Parks Chesin & Walbert
19169
page-template,page-template-blog-large-image,page-template-blog-large-image-php,page,page-id-19169,page-parent,ajax_fade,page_not_loaded,,select-theme-ver-4.1,wpb-js-composer js-comp-ver-5.3,vc_responsive

Smyrna Fire Lieutenant Prevails in Disability Case

Parks, Chesin & Walbert’s 2018 is off to a great start with a jury verdict of almost $200,000 on behalf of a firefighter who was wrongfully terminated. In October of 1990, Allen Goble joined the Smyrna Fire Department. For the next 23 years and 7 months, he devoted his life to being a first responder. Like many firefighters and emergency medical technicians, Allen thrived on the adrenaline rush of heading to fire and accident scenes and saving lives. This work can take a toll as well. After years of witnessing some of the most profound human tragedies that most of us never encounter, and after witnessing the death of a small child, Allen developed anxiety disorder and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. While he tried to endure his suffering in private for some period of time, he and his family took the courageous step of informing the Fire Department of his diagnosis.

READ MORE

PCW Obtains Over $1,000,000 Verdict for Car Crash

On December 21, 2011, Wayne Nichols suffered significant injuries when a car driven by Andrew Fannin ran a stop sign and collided with Mr. Nichols vehicle as he was entering an intersection in Henry County. Mr. Nichols’s most significant injuries from the collision were to his knee and neck. He suffered a severe MCL strain in his knee, as well as three disc herniations in his neck that resulted a three-level cervical fusion surgery.

READ MORE

Another PCW Victory for Whistle-Blowers

In July of 2010, Fulton County Deputy County Manager Gwendolyn Warren and Maria Colon, the Fulton County Professional Standards Officer in charge of the Office of Professional Standards (“OPS”), were removed from their jobs because they exposed extensive government waste and corruption. Their report of gross fraud and waste within the Fulton County government led to a string of successful police investigations which uncovered a variety of wrong-doing, including the illegal payment of welfare benefits to employees, potential conflicts of interest, an employee trading county employment for sexual favors, and the theft of more than $180,000 of taxpayer money by County employees who used the money to operate a private company, Exquisite Events. The County Commissioners did not like the publicity, and pressured the County Manager to eliminate OPS. Eventually, the County Manager gave into the pressure, removed both Warren and Colon from their jobs, and closed OPS.

READ MORE

PCW Wins $1,000,000 for Client Against Tea Party Patriots

PCW partner Matt Maguire, along with co-counsel Jonathan Pope of Hasty Pope, LLP, obtained a verdict of $833,000 (and total judgment in excess of $1,000,000) for their client, James Lyle, in a hard-fought libel case against the Tea Party Patriots, Inc. (“TPP”) and its volunteer employee, Lee Martin. Mr. Martin was the husband of TPP co-founder and board member Jenny Beth Martin. The Plaintiff, Mr. Lyle, was in a relationship with Amy Kremer, another co-founder of TPP who had previously been removed from the TPP board and who became affiliated with a rival tea party faction called Tea Party Express. While using a fake profile, Mr. Martin posted on a tea party activist’s Facebook wall that James Lyle had molested Amy Kremer’s teenaged daughter and that Amy Kremer kicked her daughter out of the house for reporting the molestation to the police. The entire post was false. Mr. Lyle did not molest the daughter, nor had he ever been accused of doing so.

READ MORE

Whistle-Blower Paid $280,000 Thanks to Parks, Chesin & Walbert

Bernard Best came to the United Sates from Barbados, where he was a police officer. Once in Atlanta, he trained to become a housing inspector and obtained a job with the City of Atlanta in April of 2013. The City of Atlanta administers a program in the Building Department and elsewhere called the Professional Certification Program. This policy offers incentive pay to employees who obtain additional certifications in their fields. Mr. Best enrolled in the program to improve his earning potential and his skills as a building inspector. He obtained three additional certifications through the program, which, according to City Ordinances, entitled him to an additional $6,000 in annual compensation. However, Mr. Best’s managers refused to approve his new pay.

READ MORE

From Anita Hill, Clarence Thomas to Gretchen Carlson, Roger Ailes: Ain’t No Sunshine When She’s Gone

Mention sexual harassment to anyone of news-viewing age in the 1990s and few names spring to mind faster than Anita Hill or Clarence Thomas. The phrase “sexual harassment” was first coined by journalist and Cornell lecturer, Lin Farley, as a succinct description of the unwelcome, insidious behavior women experienced in male-dominated work environments. However, the phrase – and its meaning – didn’t come to national prominence until 1991 – the year Clarence Thomas was nominated to the United States Supreme Court.

READ MORE

Employment Practices Liability Insurance: What It Is & Why It Matters

Roger Murdoch is probably thankful he has insurance.

Earlier this year, Gretchen Carlson, a former high-profile news anchor on Fox News, sued Roger Ailes and Fox for damages relating to decades of sexual harassment she experienced during her Fox News tenure. Her suit quickly settled for an astonishing $20 million. In the aftermath, many women employed at Fox came forward (and continue to come forward) with stories about a pervasive business culture of both quid pro quo and hostile-work-environment types of harassment within the Fox News corporation.

READ MORE

The History of Sexual Harassment Claims in the Workplace

It is only in the last 50 years that sexual harassment has become recognized as an obstacle to a safe working environment for all employees. For hundreds of years it was nearly impossible for a woman to successfully bring claims of rape or a lawsuit for damages against an employer who harassed her or demanded sexual favors. The rise of the Women’s Rights Movement in the mid-1800’s brought to light the issue of sexual coercion of working women (particularly servants). However, this generally received less attention than women’s lack of access to property rights, poor working conditions, and societal dependence on men.

READ MORE

College Admissions: Georgetown’s Decision & What It Could Mean for Employment Law

In September, Georgetown University announced preferential admissions status would be given to descendants of slaves that were used to benefit the University (specifically 272 slaves that were sold to help keep Georgetown afloat financially in 1838). The preference granted would be akin to the preference given to children and grandchildren of alumni. The preference was announced along with a number of initiatives as a means to atone for the University’s past reliance on slave labor and upon the recommendations of a committee commissioned last year.

READ MORE

5 of the Most Common Mistakes Employers Make

The employer-employee relationship is a power dynamic that can often involve emotions. When an employee is terminated it is important for cooler heads to prevail in order to avoid litigation. Below, are five common employer mistakes (out of many!) to avoid if you want the separation to go smoothly as possible.

READ MORE