Companies in Texas that have more than 50 employees must abide by the federal Family Medical Leave Act when qualified employees need to use their benefits. It is against the law for employers to retaliate against workers who take advantage of their approved leave. A woman from another state claims that she lost her job after she used some of her unpaid, law-protected leave time under the Family Medical Leave Act.
The woman was hired to work at the Metro Bank of Harrisburg in 2013. Five months into her employment, she requested time off under the FMLA. In April of 2014, she took a second leave so that she could have several surgeries performed.
After she had submitted her first request for approved leave, the plaintiff maintains that her direct supervisor and others began to retaliate against her. She claims that she was subjected to a hostile work environment that included being subjected to frivolous medical exams, scrutinizing everything she did, and disciplining her for infractions that she felt did not have merit. Additionally, she was threatened that if she did not transfer, she would lose her job.
The day after the plaintiff submitted her second FMLA leave, she was fired. The plaintiff claims she had always performed her job in a satisfactory fashion, so she feels she was fired without just cause. She is accusing the bank of wrongful termination and violating her rights under the Family Medical Leave Act. The woman is asking the court to have her reinstated as well as be awarded monetary damages and lost wages. Employees in Texas should not fear retaliation when they go onto or return from leave, and those who face adverse working conditions may consider pursuing legal options.
Source: pennrecord.com, "Former Harrisburg bank worker sues ex-employer, alleging wrongful dismissal", Sept. 3, 2015