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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
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    1

    Default FMLA, Harassment, and Retaliation

    My question involves labor and employment law for the state of: TN

    I was terminated from a call center job on 8/7/2009 due to "Performance". For a clear understanding, I will list the chain of events that led up to my termination.

    On 12/24/2008 my manager left me a voicemail, advising me to contact her immediately. My next day of work was on the 12/26/2008 so I stopped by her desk and told me to head over to HR immediately. I did so, and was advised that the certification of last year's FMLA approved leave had expired so I had get it recertified. I was approved for intermittent leave at 20 hours a week, my wife is manic depressive.

    HR setup a meeting to get the paperwork on January 2nd, 2009. I submitted within the 15 day time frame. On January 20th, it was denied due to medical documentation does not support my request. I setup a meeting with HR to find out exactly why. She told me the doctor refused to sign-off on it. She also made two concerning statements to me: That my wife has not seen the doctor in 3 months and she missed her doctors appointment last week. Both statements are true, however she was prescribed 3 months of meds in advance, and due to an extreme depressive mode I could not get her out of bed for the doctors appointment .

    Got another certification form on January 23rd, and he made sure to mention that my wife had seem him 11 times the prior year. I received notice on February 2nd, 2009 that it was approved and "Qualified from 1/30/2009 to 7/30/2009. The abscences prior were not approved.

    Since last year took forever to get it approved, I made an appointment with the DOL, and a few weeks later got a call from the investigator. She said they had enough to proceed with an investigation with my go ahead. I told her to hold off on it, I would rather get this straightened out with HR. HR told me January abscences would not count against me. So I called the investigation off.

    I was missing work, all FMLA qualified, and out of courtesy called my manager and told her I will be missing one day as I take my wife to be cared for by her grandmother in another state. Her response: "can't you wait until your day off to do this? I responded my wife has suicidal tendencies and I could never live with myself if she harmed herself if I did put this off. She showed no concern, only that I was missing work. I was put on the defensive twice now, once by HR, and now by my manager.

    Shortly after we had a teem meeting. The manager addressed the team about attendance. She said that she once had a brother that was dying. She made the trip up there but could not cure him, so why stay? She made it back to work. I thought that was a very cold statement to use as an example.

    I was now under her radar.

    All my calls were being closely monitored and a meeting was setup for May between manager and coach. They developed an action plan for me, with unrealistic expectations. I knew I would not make them, and sure enough the next month I was placed on a 90 day bad standing period.

    I complained this to HR, and she said she would do an audit to ensure all was treated equally. The results were that we all received fair treatment. I also complained about the comment my manager made and she agreed it was unappropriate. I also told her about my senior rep refusing to take customer escalation calls. I also complained about not getting the assistance I need to help reach those goals and I was working in a very negative environment. I would receive emails telling me I am letting the whole team down. I was being micromanaged. I'ts hard to function at peak level when you are constantly being fed negative information. My stress and anxiety level were through the roof.

    Next thing I know for June, my action plan has changed to a much more reasonable level. And I met the plan. July I met all the stats except one: Call resolution time and it was only off 11 seconds. If there was nothing wrong with May's action plan, than why was it reduced so much.

    I went to work on 8/7/2009. Logged in for one call, and my coach told me to logoff. I knew the deal. I was led to a room with another manager. He said I was being fired for performance (no specifics on exactly what performance standard) and hand over my badge. So cold. I been there for 3.5 years and received numerous certificates and awards before I joined that team. I wasn't fired for anything unethical, so how about "Dave, we appreciate your time here at tmobile sorry it just didn't work out'.

    DOL can't help me now, but considering a possible civil suit. I showed my stats to several other leaders there, and they said they dont see performance issues.

    Since I saw the groundwork being laid for my termination, I got copies of docs
    showing the negativity on the team, also dates and times of events where I didn't get support I needed which affected me reaching those goals.

    It's all been faxed to the companies investigative team and the CEO.

    Do I Have a case for a civil suit here?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    75,925

    Default Re: FMLA, Harassment, and Retaliation

    That's more than we can analyze for you. Apparently there were valid performance concerns, and you admit that you didn't meet the terms of your action plan (just that you came close). Whether you can prove that was disparate treatment, with your being placed on a shorter leash than other employees, generally involves analyzing a lot of data about other employees' performance, discipline, etc.

    Consult a plaintiff-side employment lawyer about whether it makes sense to proceed. The consultation should be free.

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