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News Wrongful Termination, Workers' Compensation and Work Injuries

So you have been given a bad job reference by your ex-employer. Can you sue for defamation (libel/slander)?

Written by Mr. Roger Davie on Wednesday, 30 Nov 2016.

As a general rule you can sue someone who makes a false statement about you that hurts your reputation subject to certain privileges.  You should note that if the statement or reference is true or is an opinion it is not subject to a lawsuit for defamation (libel/slander). A former employer’s response to a prospective employer about a former employee’s job performance is widely viewed as subject to a qualified privilege, and this qualified privilege is re-enforced by an “immun [read more]

If you are fired and you have unpaid commission can you still receive the commission or is it contingent on being employed?

Written by Mr. Roger Davie on Wednesday, 30 Nov 2016.

As an El Paso employment lawyer I see a lot of fired employees who don't necessarily want to sue for wrongful termination but want to be paid for commission that they believe they are owed but remains unpaid. The law generally says that you are owed the commission unless the commission agreement says that it is conditioned upon your being employed when paid. In other words if the agreement indicates that the commission is earned when the sale is made then you should get the commission e [read more]

If you want to have a valid whistleblower claim you better make sure that your supervisor knows not only that you disagree with the illegal activity but also knows you reported the illegal activity to the appropriate law enforcement agency.

Written by Mr. Roger Davie on Wednesday, 30 Nov 2016.

I have written at length about the Texas Whistleblower Act and that you must be a government employee who reported illegal activity to an appropriate law enforcement agency: (1. http://rogerdavie.com/news/whistleblowing-is-not-p....; http://rogerdavie.com/news/before-filing-a-whistle...; 2. http://rogerdavie.com/news/the-courts-hold-that-yo...; 3. http://rogerdavie.com/news/before-filing-a-whistle... (http://rogerdavie.com/news/whistleblowing-is-not-protected-by-the- [read more]

The Courts hold that you must file a whistleblower claim within 90 days of the retaliation and you must file a grievance (even if there is not one or it does not apply to you) and the 90 days is suspended while the grievance is pending unless it doesn't.

Written by Mr. Roger Davie on Wednesday, 30 Nov 2016.

I have written at length about the Texas Whistleblower Act and that you must be a government employee who reported illegal activity to an appropriate law enforcement agency: (http://rogerdavie.com/news/whistleblowing-is-not-p.... Also under the grievance procedure you no only must report the illegal act to the appropriate law enforcement agency and file the grievance (even if there is no grievance procedure (http://rogerdavie.com/news/before-filing-a-whistle...)) but you must file th [read more]

The Courts hold that you must file a whistleblower claim within 90 days of the retaliation and you must file a grievance (even if there is not one or it does not apply to you) and the 90 days is suspended while the grievance is pending unless it doesn't.

Written by Mr. Roger Davie on Wednesday, 30 Nov 2016.

I have written at length about the Texas Whistleblower Act and that you must be a government employee who reported illegal activity to an appropriate law enforcement agency: (http://rogerdavie.com/news/whistleblowing-is-not-p.... Also under the grievance procedure you no only must report the illegal act to the appropriate law enforcement agency and file the grievance (even if there is no grievance procedure (http://rogerdavie.com/news/before-filing-a-whistle...)) but you must file th [read more]

Before filing a whistleblower suit, a government employee “must initiate action under the grievance or appeal procedures” of the employer entity. This is true even if the employee is not allowed to file a grievance or one does not exist.

Written by Mr. Roger Davie on Wednesday, 30 Nov 2016.

I have written at length about the Texas Whistleblower Act and that you must be a government employee who reported illegal activity to an appropriate law enforcement agency: http://rogerdavie.com/news/whistleblowing-is-not-p..., http://rogerdavie.com/news/before-a-a-government-e... (http://rogerdavie.com/news/whistleblowing-is-not-protected-by-the-whistleblower-act-unless-a-whistleblowers-report-is-to-an-appropriate-law-enforcement-authority) Before filing a whistleblower&n [read more]

Before a a government employee can sue under the Texas Whistleblower Act they must have suffered an adverse employment action.

Written by Mr. Roger Davie on Wednesday, 30 Nov 2016.

I have written at length about the Texas Whistleblower Act and that you must be a government employee who reported illegal activity to an appropriate law enforcement agency: (http://rogerdavie.com/news/whistleblowing-is-not-p... (http://rogerdavie.com/news/whistleblowing-is-not-protected-by-the-whistleblower-act-unless-a-whistleblowers-report-is-to-an-appropriate-law-enforcement-authority)). However, you must have also suffered an adverse employment action.  An obvious adve [read more]

Whistleblowing is not protected by the Whistleblower Act unless a whistleblower’s report is to an “appropriate law enforcement authority.

Written by Mr. Roger Davie on Wednesday, 30 Nov 2016.

Whistleblowing is not protected by the Whistleblower Act unless a whistleblower’s report is to an “appropriate law enforcement authority. See Gov’t Code Ann. § 554.002. First, it should be understood that the whistleblower act of Texas only applies to government employees.  There is no general whistleblower statute for employees of private non-government employees.  It is illegal to fire a private employee for refusal to do an illegal act, but reporting an illegal act may get [read more]

You can sue your employer if you are fired for refusing to do an illegal act, the reason for your termination must be only the refusal to do an illegal act an no other reason. This is known as sole cause.

Written by Mr. Roger Davie on Wednesday, 30 Nov 2016.

The cause of action for refusing to do an illegal act in Texas  requires a plaintiff to prove that refusal to commit an illegal act was the “sole” reason for the discharge. The “sole” reason standard is more difficult to satisfy than the “motivating factor” standard of for most wrongful termination claims, and it might even require more than the “but for” cause standard of other employment laws.  In Peine v. HIT Services L.P., 479 S.W.3d 445 (Tex. App.—Houston [read more]

Can you sue your employer for refusing to do an illegal act even if there is a specific anti-retaliation federal statute? The answer seems to be yes. A good day for truck drivers in Texas.

Written by Mr. Roger Davie on Wednesday, 30 Nov 2016.

In Texas it is illegal to fire someone who refuses to do an illegal act.  However, some actions an employee refuses to commit are prohibited by federal laws that have their own anti-retaliation protections. Some employers have tried to keep employees from suing for refusing to do an illegal act by claiming that the employee must sue under the anti-retaliation act of the Federal Statute instead of the Texas general cause of action of retaliation for refusal to do an illegal act [read more]