1. (TCO A) Alice Jones was employed as a clerk-typist by a company. She requested and was refused a vacation day. The employer’s refusal was based on her failure to submit the request at least two weeks in advance as required by company policy. She announced that she would take the day anyway, and when she subsequently failed to report for work, was fired for insubordination, plus the unexcused absence. Jones claimed that the company’s real reason for firing her was a complaint that she had made to her state’s department of labor concerning elimination of employee rest breaks.
Explain and evaluate the possible causes of action available to Jones, and identify and explain the possible defenses available to Jones’ employer with regard to each cause of action. Integrate case law and statutory support into your response. (Points : 30)
2. (TCO B) Jaro was a disc jockey for MNLO, a radio station in San Francisco. He initially broadcasted in only English. The station program director asked him to use some Spanish street phrasesand slang in an effort to attract Hispanic listeners and increase the station’s audience. After reviewing the ratings, the station manager concluded that the use of Spanish on the air actually decreased the station audience, because it confused listeners as to the nature of the programming, the rest of which was in English. Jaro was then instructed to broadcast in only English. Jaro continued to use Spanish while on the air and was ultimately fired. He filed a complaint alleging Title VII violations based on national origin discrimination. Explain and analyze the basis for Jaro’s Title VII complaint, and whether it would result in liability on the part of the station. Determine the remedies available to Jaro, if any. Use case law to support your analysis and conclusion. (Points : 30)
3. (TCO C) John worked for Acme as a senior analyst. He suffered a heart attack and took medical leave from his job. Prior to the heart attack, his supervisor opened a locked drawer in his work desk and found prescription drugs that were not prescribed to John. The supervisor thought that John had been acting a bit strangely, but decided that he would confront him about it later. The supervisor did not confront John before the heart attack.
After six months, John returned to work on a part-time basis. John worked reduced hours for the next year. Acme was forced to reduce its workforce to cut costs. Acme conducted a performance appraisal of all managerial employees and discharged those with the lowest performance ratings. John, because of his part-time status, had one of the lowest performance ratings. The company did not look at performance pro-rata based on hours worked. John sued and alleged that he was wrongfully terminated in violation of the ADA. John alleged that his termination was a result of his disability. Identify and analyze the potential claims and defenses. Utilize case law to support your responses and conclusions. (Points : 30)
4. (TCO D) An electrical contractor required electricians and apprentices to wear hard hats and respirators when he felt job safety required them. An apprentice who was a member of the Sikh Aharma Brotherhood, which requires members to wear a beard and a turban, refused to comply. If the contractor does not require the apprentice to wear a hard hat and to shave, so that his respirator fits properly, explain whether the contractor will breach OSHA’s general duty clause. If the contractor does require the apprentice to remove his turban and shave his beard, to properly use the safety equipment, determine whether this is religious discrimination in violation of Title VII. Use case law and statutes to support your position. (Points : 30)
5. (TCO E) An ambulance service transports disabled individuals on a non-emergency basis. Jane was hired as a night dispatcher. She worked at home, and was required to be on duty to take calls for service from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m., Monday through Thursday, and from 9:00 p.m. Friday to 7:00 a.m. on Monday. She was paid $550 per month. She was not given any special training, she was simply instructed how to fill in record sheets, and how to call the ambulance crew to notify them of the service request. Jane was free to engage in personal business as long as it did not interfere with the calls, and was able to leave her home as long as she made sure that someone was available to answer the phone.
The ambulance company claimed that Jane was an independent contractor and was exempt from the FLSA’s overtime and wage requirements. Jane filed suit to collect overtime and minimum wage back pay under the FLSA. Determine whether she will succeed. If you determine that she will succeed, explain the remedies available. Break down the elements of your response using applicable case law and statutory support for your position. (Points : 30)
6. (TCO F) In accepting an early retirement package from his employer, Eddy could not work as a hotel/restaurant worker. He took a job as a supervisor at a local restaurant. Eddy continued to receive full benefits from his previous employer for two years when he was informed that the pension plan had changed and that his benefits would be terminated because he was working in the hotel/restaurant industry. Apply the legal criteria of ERISA to the scenario and analyze what, if any, legal recourse is available to Eddy. Identify the potential legal claim and assess the likelihood of prevailing in conjunction with the potential employer liability. (Points : 30)