Federal courts make it harder to sue for jury service discrimination

The 5th Cir ruled that if you are fired for serving on a federal jury (including a grand jury) you have to prove that but for your service you would not have been fired.  In Rogers’ v. Bromac the District Court held that the reason the employee was fired was because she made an inappropriate comment to a fellow employee.  Rogers’ claimed the real reason she fired was because she served on a lengthy grand jury and caused problems in her employment.  The District Court in an odd twist denied this poor employee her right of jury trial and dismissed her case saying he believed the employer’s reason.  The 5th Cir upheld this opinion which basically allows employers who want to fire employees who serve on juries to do so they need to simply wait until they have an excuse or the employee makes a small mistake.  This opinion should not be surprising to any of the El Paso employment lawyers who have followed the 5th Cir in recent years.  The Federal Courts have done everything they can to keep employees from having a right to a jury trial whether it is to strengthen and apply the “but for” test of discrimination uphold arbitration agreements and strengthen District Courts ability to dismiss cases without allowing then to have a right to a jury trial.  This case is simply sad because it involved a case where an employee was actually doing what she was required to do – serve on a jury.  Another sad day for America and the jury system.  El Paso employment lawyers need to take care when going to federal court.

Scroll to Top