Retaliation claim

I was diagnosed with cancer and went out on medical leave in January, 2007 I worked from home on occasion as I felt better. I returned to work full timeon May 1, 2007. My job responsibilites were significantly reduced and I was the manager of the office. A younger co-worker took control of my responsbilities and refused to relinquish them when I came back to work. Several months later, our supervisor promoted her. Since she was employed several months after me, she received two performance reviews and two raises and I received none.

She is 30 and I am 57. Several months after her promotion, I was terminated from my job after a short additional leave of absence due to my daughter having a baby. The reasons for the termination were cited as the company have financial difficulties.

I received a severance package, but not one to my satisfaction.

Would it behoove me to proceed further to try and get more financial security? I am not sure whether I might have a retaliatory claim. By the way, I was always told that I was an integral part of the success of the company, prior to me taking a leave to be with my daughter during her delivery.

2 answers  |  asked Feb 25, 2008 2:43 PM [EST]  |  applies to Pennsylvania

Answers (2)

Christopher Ezold
You may have claims for age and/or disability discrimination, or for violation of the FMLA

Before I respond to your inquiry, I must state that we have not spoken, I have not reviewed the relevant documents and facts, and I do not represent you. Therefore, my discussion below is not a legal opinion, but is informational only. Finally, my discussion applies only to issues to which Pennsylvania or Federal law apply, unless otherwise specified.

That being said, you may have claims for age and/or disability discrimination, or for violation of the FMLA. Having been replaced by a younger, potentially less experienced, employee, you may have a claim for age discrimination. Furthermore, if your employer terminated you because of concerns about a recurrence of your cancer, you may have a claim for disability discrimination. Finally, you may have a claim for violation of the Family Medical Leave Act, depending on the amount of leave you took in the past year and whether you and your employer meet certain requirements.

If you've signed a release or waiver of claims, you may have waived any claims you have. You should have an attorney review any such release or waiver before investigating your potential claim(s).

You do not appear to have a retaliation claim, unless you complained of discrimination and were fired for the complaint.

Finally, you have up to 300 days to bring a claim for age or disability discrimination; therefore, depending on when you were terminated, and when the younger woman was promoted, your claims for discrimination may be evaporating quickly. If you wish to pursue them, you should contact an attorney quickly.

If you would like to discuss this matter further, please feel free to contact me at the below address(es) or number.

/Christopher E. Ezold/
Nancy O'Mara Ezold, P.C.
One Belmont Avenue,
Suite 501
Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004
(610) 660-5585

posted by Christopher Ezold  |  Feb 27, 2008 09:01 AM [EST]
Doris Dabrowski
retaliation claim

If you haven't already signed the severance agreement, you may cite the circumstances to try to negotiate a better package. The family & medical leave act applies to employees who take up to 12 weeks leave for their own medical condition or to care for an immediate family member with a serious health condition. There are other eligibility criteria for FMLA.

posted by Doris Dabrowski  |  Feb 25, 2008 3:03 PM [EST]

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