Monday, December 23, 2019

’Twas the Employment Law Night Before Christmas

In what will become an annual tradition for my last post of the year, I bring you the holiday classic, ’Twas the Employment Law Night before Christmas.

To all of my readers, thank you for a great 2019.
I’ll see everyone on January 6, 2020, with fresh content to kick off the new year.

’Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the office
Not a creature was stirring, well, just one of the bosses;
The bonuses were paid by the company with care,
In hopes that no ungrateful employees would swear.

The workers were home all snug on their thrones;
While visions of deadlines danced on their iPhones;
And I at my desk, alone to deal with the crap,
For the one who’s in charge gets no holiday nap.

When out in the lot there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from my desk to see what was the matter;
Away to the door I flew in a hurried jolt,
Tore open the shutters and threw open the bolt.

The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow,
Gave a lustre of midday to objects below,
When what to my wondering eyes did acquaint,
But a process server holding an eight-count complaint.

Count One alleged that we had discriminated,
On the basis of race by one irritated;
A denied promotion, gone to someone who’s white,
Said the lawsuit I read in the glow of the night.

Count Two, racial harassment, words she had o’erheard,
Does she know the ruckus she’s about to have stirred?
Oh, how she had pulled that nasty, evil trigger.
I’d never heard supervisors rhyme something with bigger.

Count Three, it’s not just racism she alleged,
Also sexism, to which management pledged.
The boys, she said, we paid so much more than the girls
Yet they do the same work as each work day unfurls.

Count Four, uh oh, #MeToo, sexual harassment;
Yes, it’s true, our managers often do torment.
But the touching and groping, alleged qui pro quo,
Never did anyone coerce being her beau.

Count Five, violation of the FMLA.
Retaliation for a leave; she said we must pay.
How many weeks after did we demote her? Three.
Is that enough temporal proximity?

Count Six, negligence from our data breach.
Lots of employee info, stole that cyber thief.
We should’ve invested in some tech best practices;
Cybersecurity relies on the law of averages.

Count Seven, wage and hour class action, oh crap!
Did we fall into an FLSA lawsuit trap?
Mis-classifications, non-exempt for exempt,
And off-the-clock work too, my butt cheeks were then clenched.

Ah, Count Eight, finally we can hope for success;
Intentional infliction / emotional distress.
With all of the awful conduct that she had claimed,
When’s the last time our workers we civility trained?

I spoke not a single word, went back my desk,
And yelled, with none to hear, “Do I ever get to rest?!”
I emailed our lawyer, thru my phone I exclaimed,
“How much trouble are we in? To me please explain!”

He sprang to his phone, gave to me this rejoinder.
“A lot; I’ll need a $20,000 retainer.”
But I also heard him proclaim, so as not to slight—
“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!”

* Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash