Exactly what does a federal lawsuit look like? Below is a copy of the lawsuit that Carolyn Filippone filed against Rob Turner in his official capacity as the Hillsborough County Property Appraiser. The allegations are short, simple and to the point.
Monthly Archives: July 2012
It looks like Hillsborough Property Appraiser, Rob Turner, has battles on two fronts. He is seeking another term as the County Property Appraiser and given the stories that recently appeared in the local papers, Mr. Turner will have an uphill battle. See Storms, Turner at Bell Shoals Baptist for First Election Square Off. Second, a week ago Carolyn Filippone filed a retaliation lawsuit against Mr. Turner’s office.
There is little doubt that Mr. Turner is regretting his decision to fire Ms. Filippone. I previously noted that there was no question that Ms. Filippone would file suit against Mr. Turner. The only real question was when the suit would be filed. As previously noted, Ms. Fillippone brought an EEOC charge against Mr. Turner alleging sexual harassment. Among other things, Mr. Turner confessed to sending porn to Ms. Fillippone. The EEOC dismissed Ms. Fillippone’s charge in April 2012. For some reason Mr. Turner believed that the EEOC dismissal gave him the right to fire Ms. Fillippone without worrying about legal exposure. Mr. Turner failed to understand that the EEOC dismissal letter initiated a 90-day clock in which Ms. Filippone may file a lawsuit in state or federal court. Mr. Turner also did not understand that the EEOC dismisses approximately 99.99% of the discrimination charges that cross their desk and tell the employee to find an attorney and file a lawsuit.
If he did not fire her, there is a good chance that she would have allowed the 90 day clock to run without filing suit. Although Mr. Turner confessed to sending Ms. Filippone porn, she still had hurdles to overcome in order to prove a case for sexual harassment. Mr. Turner committed the quintessential error by terminating Ms. Filippone’s employment. Simply stated, retaliation cases are easier to prove than harassment cases. A plaintiff in a retaliation case does not have to show that she would have prevailed in the harassment case. Mr. Turner should have consulted his attorneys before making the decision to fire Ms. Filippone. I doubt the County is ready to deal with yet another costly employment case following the misconduct of one of its officials.
For specific questions on Labor and Employment Law, please call me, Rich Bradford at (813) 413-2402.
Bradford & Bradford’s practice areas include, Wills, Trusts, Probate, Estate Planning, Civil Litigation, Employment Law, and Family Law.
The author of the Custody Calculations blog has interesting thoughts on the pending Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes divorce. The author notes that Ms. Holmes is aggressively seeking sole custody of the children because with respect to Tom Cruise, the best predictor of future behavior is past behavior. The author claims that in Cruise’s divorce from Nicole Kidman, he managed to gain the upper hand in the custody battle and effectively keep Kidman from seeing the children. Now that the Cruise-Kidman children are adults, the author notes that you will not find the children photographed with their mother. The author suggests that Holmes’ aggressive stance is necessary if she wants to have a future with her children.
A link to the Custody Calculations blog can be found here: Everyone is Going To Have Something to Say; TomKat Divorce.
Laws against discrimination are designed to ensure that employment decisions are made without regard to an applicant or employee’s race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, or disability. An employee that falls in any of these groups is considered to be in a protected category. InFlorida, employees may pursue remedies under state law (i.e., the Florida Civil Rights Act) or federal law (under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, or the Age Discrimination in Employment Act).
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed a sex or gender discrimination lawsuit on behalf of three women who claimed that FedEx Freight Inc. hired a male employee over them. According to their allegations, the company’s job posting indicated that a bachelor’s degree or related experience was required, as well as two years’ experience in human resources. All three women met these requirements, while the male employee did not have a degree nor human resources experience. FedEx agreed to settle this action for $115,000.
Questions regarding employment discrimination can be answered by contacting me, Rich Bradford, at (813) 413-2402.