Employment Law Questions? Ask an Employment Lawyer.
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A "rght to work" state means that you don't have to join a union and Texas is one of the states that prohibits that.
I need you to be a little more specific in your question(s) if you could. When we answer general ones like "what are my rights" we have to give general answers and, invariably, the customer responds with "I already knew that". This type of forum works better if you ask specific questions so we know exactly what you are looking for.
ok sir what do you mean by prohibit? They try to stop you from joining a union or they don't recommend it.
In other words an employer can't force someone to join a union or pay dues as a condition of employment.
ok Sir, my question is what do i respond to them by not meeting my log in time at the computer for being in the rest room
Was the condition related to sickle cell?
I havent proved that yet but I had a doctors visit friday that sent me to see a specialist for monday. Either way the sickle cell trait (g6pd) is a red blood cell deficiency. Red blood cells are what carry oxygen to the rest of your body to function properly and with my condition it makes all of my organs work slower.
Was it an extended bathroom stay and was it the result of the sickle cell or its symptoms?
In your opinion?
I always have extended bathroom stays, and its symptoms are talk about being related to urine. but I could have a another condition as well which is why im seeing a specialist monday. either way they said i should have had a doctors note on file before the complaint but no one ever told me what i had on file wasnt good enough and what is should say specifically.
This is one of those cases where you can try and do it yourself, but you really need to hire a local attorney to write the letter for you. If you had more knowledge of your condition I could point you in the right direction but since you don't it is going to have to be a "catch all" letter written pursuant to the ADA and possibly the anti-discrimination anti-retaliation statutes.
how much is it?
Most attorneys will do it for $100-200 bucks at the most.
ill pay it can you do it
Since you don't have the hard facts yet the letter has to include all possibilities at least briefly and it will be pretty complicated.
No, we aren't allowed to draft documents. If you go to www.lawyers.com and look for attorneys in your area who practice Employment Law you should be able to find one pretty easily.
ive already written alot of it i just dont know what to pull from the ada
That's because you don't have a specific "reasonable accommodation" to request yet. That's what makes this so hard ESPECIALLY when you combine it with a possible continued retaliation claim. If you don't word it correctly you can waive the right to complain about retaliation and/or discrimination. None of the "form" letters are going to work, someone is going to have to sit down with you and go over the facts and then write the letter.
You could try hiring a contract lawyer on elance.com or odesk.com but a local lawyer woudl make more sense.
yea im here i just have to turn the letter in tomorrow, before monday morning for sure
That is going to make it difficult. You could put something in there like "as you know I suffer from (insert condition) and as a result it is taking a toll on my body and requiring me to take extended bathroom breaks. I am currently being evaluated by medical professionals and will provide a complete and specific request for a reasonable accommodation under the federal and state ADA as soon as possible but in the meantime I would ask that you allow me sufficient time to have the complete condition diagnosed and a plan of treatment developed".
Not optimal but it is better than nothing.
i don't have a reasonable accommodation but they cannot time you in the bathroom anyways right?
what does not optimal mean?
Sure, they can limit a bathroom break.
An employer can do almost anything in Texas.
but if you cant leave then you cant leave, what do i say to that
I don't understand what you mean by that?
Are you saying they don't allow you any time for bathroom breaks?
if im not finished in the bathroom i cant just get up and return to work
they allow exactly and no more than 20 minutes a day to not be logged in
I understand but when I asked earlier you said you didn't know if your condition had anything to do with the bathroom needs. If it does then you can add something like "While the full extent of my condition is not known yet, it is obvious that it is requiring some time spent in the bathroom and I am asking to be able to attend to those needs as a reasonable accommodation and can make up the time later in the day to still meet my time quota".
That puts the burden back on them to show it is not a reasonable request.
being in the bathroom for an extended period of time has been an issue my entire life.
your right, but their policy to your statement will be about not being able to be at your desk during your scheduled breaks, you have to leave.
The problem with that is if it is not related to a medical condition then it won't be considered a disability and the employer can terminate you for it.
how can they prove that its not related, and there is not a doctor who can tell me whats a normal time to be in the bathroom
The burden is first on you to show that it is related, then the burden shifts to them.
You have to provide medical documentation.
And while a doctor can't tell you a "normal time" they will probably be willing to state that "extended time" is necessary due to your condition.
how can i request more time to give the medical documentation, because then there claim will be that I should have already had it on file. i found that out from a good friend
That is why I gave you the language above and also why I suggested hiring a local lawyer.
This is like a chess game.
You have to set them up, plan responses to what they do, etc.
right im gonna write that and i will hire a local lawyer but i have to have something in writing monday morning, and i plan to meet with a lawyer to write it monday morning. so i basically have to turn it in before i even meet with the lawyer
If you use that language I gave you that covers the basics and then get the lawyer to help you draft a more complete response.
and i love playing chess by the way. from everything you know what do you think there response will be cause i can gaurantee they have lawyers working on it
They will likely respond saying they need more specifics or medical documentation but that will buy you a few days.
when is my last opportunity to resign before termination rather then damaging my career and do i qualify for unemployment if i resign for complaining of discrimination and retaliation
Usually they will offer you a chance to resign before you are terminated but if you resign one second before being terminated it is sufficient. If the unemployment person believes you resigned due to a "hostile work environment" based on the facts you have given then you would qualify for unemployment since it is the same as "constructive termination".
and my last question is how can they terminate me based on this if i havent been able to appeal the suspension. and the termination is based on the suspension and this.
They will say that this alone is sufficient for termination.
yea but if they serve me with the indefinite suspension letter i have to go to that meeting right?
You would if it is a required meeting.
it is required, when can they technically give me the letter?
There is no time limit set by law.
They can give it to you at any point and set the meeting at any point.
and can i just turn in a 30 days notice or 2 weeks notice for resignation without them giving me an indefinite suspension letter
You can't stop them from giving you the letter but your notice/resignation would supercede it.
you think i should submit that before responding?
I can't offer an opinion on that. That's a personal choice.
i just need to know if i qualify for unemployment if i resign after complaining of retaliation
It's not automatic.
cause i dont have enough time to find another job and i dont want a termination on my record
I understand the situation. It all depends on who you get at the unemployment office.
You likely will stand a better chance of getting it if you request a reasonable accommodation and they refuse it but you will want to discuss this with your local lawyer as well.
how far in advace can i make the resignation letter? 1 month 2months. Im really just trying to make it to october 6th so im vested and they are trying to prevent that
I don't think it is viable to submit it months in the future and not expect them to be able to sanction you. Probably a couple of weeks but there is no law on it.
but there has been someone that submitted it 4 months in advance
I think you can submit it whenever you want. The issue is whether they can terminate you in the intervening time and whether you can collect unemployment then.
do i need to include a copy of any ada document in my response, and i forgot to mention i was taking mulit vitamins which could have had an adverse reaction on my body. i have proof of that
even if i submit that do you think they could push for a medical separation?
Yes, probably so.
To both questions.
where do i get a copy related to the ada document
But by "ada doc" it is only if the employer requires a specific form. Otherwise the language I gave you should suffice.
I have to switch computers. Be back in a sec.
if they require that form then who is the burden on if they didnt let me know
If you send a letter in and they require it on a form then they should tell you that.
ok you mean if i send a letter to them now about my condition or i should have already sent them a letter. I just gave them copies of my medical record
If you send them a letter now and they require a form they should make you aware of it.
what should my letter say, but then they will say it is after the fact of the complaint
I gave you sample language above, that's about the best I can give through this type of forum.
That should buy you enough time to get a local lawyer to review it while they decide what to do.
ok heres the deal my document goes to the internal affairs manager monday, he either sustains it or rejects. which he will reject it. then it goes to a committee to either reject it or sustain it. which is why i need to be sure to have something good enough in my response monday that buys me time to have a lawyer right it.
im sorry he will sustain it. is what i meant
That language I gave you should be sufficient to get you through the initial stages,
should i make it only about medical or include something else.
Since this is medical related you would start with that although you can mention that you feel it is partially motivated by continued retaliation for filing the complaints.
I mean like the other "special assignments" they have me do like going to there car to get things like a popcorn machine. yes that happened last week. and special assignments like my leadership role there in speaking to the employees
No, it probably is not necessary to mention those for this response.
but it takes away from my log in time
If that affected it on the date they are complaining about then you can mention it but if not then don't.
why would i not i dont get it
It's not really relevant to his complaint.
that took 15 minutes
If they aren't complaining of the shortage on that day then it isn't relevant.
how is it not relelvant if its a violation of the policy no matter what day its for
why would she ask me specifically to do that if she felt i had a time problem
Because they aren't complaining about that day. The employer can assign you to do other things and you have to do them. If they then complained you didn't work enough hours it would be relevant but under your facts it isn't.
getting a popcorn machine out of her vehicle is not work related
We are going to have to wrap this thread up pretty quickly. When they get too long the program starts glitching.
Anything an employer asks you to do is work related.
Texas allows an employer to define, redefine, or modify job duties as they see fit.
so are you saying i couldnt refuse?
thats not a lawful order and its not written anywhere
An employer has the right to give you duties to perform and you have to perform them.
It doesn't have to be written in Texas.
yea i quit, i need a lawyer. thanks for your time i aprreciate it
Glad to be of assistance. The laws in Texas all favor the employer, it is absolutely not a fair state to be an employee in.
true i wont take up anymore of your time i appreciate the info, and i wish i had known this about texas beforehand
Best wishes to you on this!
thanks have a good day Sir,
Please don;t forget to leave a Positive Rating so I get credit for my work today.
To you as well.
ok I have a question for you, i contacted a local lawyer and she wasn't too helpful i think i just wasted money on that. she didn't write the letter for me she just had an initial consultation and gathered some facts. and she kept having to ask another lawyer that was in another room questions about the case. to briefly explain the new situation. I just received a more specific complaint for about 8 days that I did not meet my log in time. 6 hours 40 mins a day. I have a doctors note for my medical condition and now they want me to do it on a form (FMLA). The FMLA should cover me for the future, but what do i respond now to them about the past, those 8 days about to the complaint.
ok so i have just asked for the form and they are now saying it might not be covered for the past only for the future. is that true or is there something I should say to that? I have to respond by friday. my director also told me that if i quit or if im fired i wont qualify for unemployment. how true is that?
they are going to try and deny it if the physician doesn't list it as a serious medical condition in the FMLA documents. they know im not well but this is all a legal matter at this point. what should i advise the physician to write, if anything because he has already written me a good enough doctors note. you are a great lawyer by the way. i just cant seem to find that here in houston. his letter reads as follows:
Mr. Jones is my patient. He has long-standing gastrointestinal issues with a slow digestive system. His medical condition may need him to be in the restroom for longer than usual and sometimes up to 20-30 minutes.
I think he covered everything but they are giving me a hard time with this. Where can I leave you more money because your advice has been very helpful.
ok i just did it. ..... quick question because he hasn't prescribed me any medication as of yet. what should i tell him to write on the FMLA. I know they are looking for a way to deny it, and then try and terminate me. he has me taking over the counter meds and then in 3 months I go back for a follow up. He said if the condition doesnt improve he may have to have surgery.
I was given the FMLA package and given a deadline of august 1st to turn it in. It was just faxed to them by my doctors office, but last night I received a letter for the indefinite suspension hearing. its on august 7th. at this point i really dont know what to do and the local lawyers I have come in contact with here are not as good as you, its like they just wanted to take my money. 1 of the of employees i filed sexual harrasment on recently tried to run me over in the parking lot and i reported it to the supervisor and she did nothing. should i file a complaint on the supervisor or the employee to the office of inspector general?
city of houston office of inspector general i think, im not too sure i just know the name
so I should say something like on... (date) I reported to mrs.............. that the employee attempted to run me over and she never reported it up the chain of the command. she only asked me "now why would you say that" and laughed.
ok the loudermill hearing is on the 7th, do you think I could win that or is it a decided process already. the director told me he is pushing for indefinite suspenion and i have representation with the hope union, but im thinking about just resigning and not going to the loudermill hearing. can i do that with an immediate resignation or can i turn in a 2 week resignation before the hearing and it not affect me. or do i have to just flat out quit before the hearing.
but if i quit because i just cant deal with the retaliation is that suitable, will it uphold in court? or do they have to fire me? i dont want them to damage my career because it will be hard to get a job if im terminated. he also said if i quit they will say it was because indefinite suspension. i cant win at that but i can win in federal courts. i just dont wanna be terminated. so i guess ill go to the unemployment office tomorrow to see if i can quit.
ok well when i sue, can i get the termination off my record? Im filing the complaint with the office of inspector general, then im turning in my resignation. should i include constructive termination on it or what should i mention in the resignation letter to be covered and not waive any rights to sue
honestly your a smart guy, what im really trying to do is resign without being terminated, sue asap and receive unemployment which im sure i can get another job in 2 or 3 months. that's why i ask so many questions cause it seem so hard to do. if i had another job right now i would be good to go.
ok Sir what order should i submit these documents. suspension grievance, complaint, and then resignation. and when i write it as a FORMAL COMPLAINT should I put it on the department or a specific individual while mentioning others.
alright and then im cool do i have to attend the loudermill hearing? if i quit before then?
I have received the FMLA approval but it is effective for july 11. The complaint is for june 18th to the 29th. Should I resign or is my job safe with the FMLA approval
no sir i saw them on july 11, thats the only day they could put it for
they said that in the doctors note, and then i went and got the fmla, but the employer did not ask me to get it. the employer gave be a deadline of august 1 to submit an fmla package after i requested it. they gave me a letter of recommendation for termination on july 30th. the meeting is wednesday, and im not sure if i should resign. they said they would give me time to get it but then gave me the letter before the deadline. the doctors office faxed it and they had to approve it, but i think they only approved it because they had to and because its not dated for june. they are trying
I did they have it on file already, they had the doctors note on file before the fmla package.
So the doctors note would have to say. on June 18th to June 30th my patient was experiencing..... or i dont know how to really word it, but im sure they will not have a problem with wording it however. I just dont know how it should be legally worded. They have already determined my complications was serious during the visit. otherwise they would even write anything. I just didnt know they needed to write it had to do with those days. its like im playing catch up. should they make that statement on another doctors note or add it to fmla package. i didnt think they could do that.
I can kind of figure there counter, they would just say you dont have the fmla for that time period. would it be better or legal to have her add those dates to the fmla package? or even possible or just have them do it on a doctors note?
how long does that take, and where do i get the paperwork for that. but then its like saying I do an amendment to that package to mention those dates?
ok that doesnt make sense, people go to lawyers for legal advice. the situation kept slightly changing but now that i know what it is. i was trying to see if i was covered. not for any type of strategy, just for my rights in employment law that i know nothing about. i now know they they will complain about my time in the bathroom. returning late from break or lunch and signing out like 10 secs some days but clocking out everyday on time. i was just trying to figure out a way to keep my job at least for a few more months.
ok cool just so im clear on the whole thing, when we first started talkin I didn't have the fmla approval. now I have it effective as of july 11th. what I need to know is does the fmla protect my job. effective date is july 11th. I received notice of the approval july 30th. time frame the employer is complaining is june 18th to june 29 of not meeting my log in time. they also said some days I return a couple minutes late from break and said I left a couple seconds early on some days. but I clock out on time everyday. the fmla time frame is 12 months. September 1st to august 31, which should cover me for this benefit year but the effective date is july 11th. where is that tip thing on here, I haven't been on here in some time.
of courses I know yall should be paid for what you do, nothing is free.
ok so if im covered for the ada then I should not quit. my only other concern is that they are going to say I logged out a couple seconds early which there is no policy saying you have to log out a certain time. 10 seconds before 10pm but then I logged out of the time clock at 10:01. I have something from the doctor saying the problem was occurring back then, the doctor said its been an on going issue for 10 years back. in my medical facts it ask specifically.... 1. Approximate date condition commenced. answer is ( more than 10 years ago )
Probable duration of condition: ( long term )
I just wanna know what to say in the meeting because I don't have good representation, and they have great representation. I have someone from the union. that's not really fair. I haven't been impressed by the lawyers here, at least the 3 ive met with. I wish you were in Houston seriously.
I have a voice recording of me and a coworker. I reported to my supervisor that the same person I reported sexual harassment on tried to run me over in the parking lot some weeks ago. I don't know if the Supervior ever reported it, but no one spoke with me about it. So I assume she did not report it. That employee is afraid to be a witness but I have a voice recording of him admitting that I told the Supervisor what happened. Should I write a notification of what happened because if I tell them verbally they will deny I said anything. Or should I just save the recording for a suit.
ok that does sound smarter. and I have other recordings of co workers as evidence. I just spoke with my doc office and they are worried if they can amend the fmla and not get in trouble. she just wants to know if its possible and what to say. the meeting is trmw.
i was given a medical questionairre for transitional duty, i dont know if that is good or bad. but i went to the hearing and they put me on admin leave. then called me about an hour later saying they had a "long talk" as if it was giving my situation help. i don't trust these ppl. they gave me 15 calendar days to return it. but if im not on admin leave then it means i wasnt terminated. I think they are either gonna push for a medical separation or transitional duty and if its not approved then they will try and terminate me, i think they are trying to find a contradiction in the fmla. either way you my friend a very smart. o how i wish you lived in houston.
I have been trying to find the tip thing on here but i cant, its only about rating you. its hard figuring them out, but i know they are highly upset because they were not able to terminate me. which is why i have to fill out the medical questionairre for transitional duty. I dont know what that means or if i get compensated or whats the point. If im being treated for the condition it doesnt make sense for them to not allow me to be treated and then get the outcome i already asked that according to a.d.a. guidlines. I already beat em but i dont know anything about a medical separation or transitional duty.
that's the same thing i thought, that it would be to accommodate my disability, but then she started threatening about a medical separation and that i could apply to get my job back after a year if the transitional duty is approved. she basically said either i would be terminated or medically separated. i wonder if i can file a suit for a medical separation.
the medical questionairre for transitional duty they gave me is tailored to that. it seems like they are trying to make me and the doctor prove i cant do the job. there are four main questions set up with the response.... can perform now, or cannot perform now. when the doc basically just started treating me in july. I haven't even been for another visit yet but he determined on a visit that i had a serious issue. he wasn't goin off nothin i said he found out for himself. my question is am i required to fill out the med questionnaire and if so can they make him answer every question on there. or can he just respond he dont know, or just answer differently on some questions with a response that says... he is being treated. rather than saying yes or no. thats not just a questionnaire that they give everybody my name is in every question. thats weird.
it has a part a and part b. part a is only 1 question that says can he perform all of the duties, physical, and other requirements associated with the position. which the answer is going to be no, but it will be grounds for them to do a med separation. i almost want the answer to be yes and then still have part b completed. i wonder if he could just not check off either one of the yes or no and just write a complete sentence without them saying its unreasonable.
I can see why its more yes than no, but what I can't understand is why they need to challenge the fmla if they already approved it. they are the ones that approved it. i think the amendment is why they are upset and challenging it. the only reason she approved it is because it wasn't covered by the dates they were complaining about. its like it started all over again as to whether they are going to grant me fmla, but it expires on august 31st. I have to re-apply for it on September 1st. its almost like they are asking for more information to deny it, when they already approved it.
hey hows it goin? i just found out that they are going to try and terminate me because my doc did answer yes. and he put on there he can perform all job duties with accomodations of needing extra time in the rest r. they are claiming that we have an hour and 20 mins to use the rest r but we dont. thats actualy a 45 min lunch and 15 minute break separate. which is an hour and then 20 mins we dont have to be logged in. lunch and break should not be counted. i may go to the doc early tomorrow and see what they think. they are saying that fmla is for when you leave work, but i know it says somewhere in there that it is also used while at work. "intermittent" or somethin like that
im having an issue finding a good lawyer here. its like they are making their own interpretation of what the doctor said. i just gotta be ready to counter it. im broke and in school i don't how i can get a good lawyer. they are actually pressing the doc they called them today. to get "clarification".. when they are really just trying to scare them.
I have worked for ******** almost 5 years. I have been employee of the year, 2 years in a row 2010 and 2011. I applied for promotion in 2012 and was denied and never given any information regarding why I wasn't promoted or what I was ranked. I'm more qualified than all candidates and I'm a military veteran. I filled sexual harrassment on 2 married women in January 2013. I filled retaliation and hostile working environment on a Manager in March 2013. I have FMLA due to a medical issue and was given a medical questionnaire and told I would either be terminated or medically separated due to my condition....... its like Im all over the place with these issues but ima stick to the medical issue. that other stuff seems to be a distraction.
they sent the questionnaire to their legal department. it doesnt mean i will be terminated but that's what they are trying to do. on another note all i would have to do is prove that i began receiving complaints after I told them I have a disability back in january 2012, which I have the email. it seems to me to be an open and shut case that i know i can win. its just that medical questionnaire is puzzling me. the doctor wrote the same things thats in the fmla on the questionnaire and they are believing they have grounds to terminate becuase he said i can do the job as if i havent been doing the job for the past 5 years anyways. its puzzling but thanks for your help. it may take a year to win the lawsuit but I hope I am able to tell you when I win. lol
true, they asked for clarification from the doc this morning so he wrote in there yes he can do the job with accommodation but his medical condition will require extended rest room breaks. so they re-sent it because my superiors wanted more clarification. they also wrote this is in response to the clarification my job asked for. so they basically sent it twice and then added things. im sure the can do that if they asked for clarification but she wants to speak to him over the phone. i told him it doesnt matter what he says over the phone cause you cant prove you told her that over the phone. i also told him he doesnt have to speak to her over the phone, just fax it in cause he is busy conducting procedures. sent the fax just to prove it is medical as if i havent already... i never knew how much a medical issue could be turned into some type of legal issue it seems. i dont know but Ill definitely let you know how it turns out. everything leans on this medical questionnaire looks like. lol
are you the same person ive been speaking with? the name changed it looks like. i think they were beyond the boundaries long time ago but it seems employers can do a lot in this state. im no too worried about it, but somethin is strange how they seem like vultures in this matter. i had no idea employees had to deal with things like this. and they even lied and said i have an hour and 20 mins to use the rest room. which is a lie, i have 20 minutes or 19 to be specific in which i dont have to be logged in. it takes 2 or 3 minutes returning and going to the rest room when i sign out. that 6 minutes right there just in transit.
ok cool so can the doc res-send the medical questionnaire and do they have to acknowledge it. or do they choose which one to go with, eventhough they asked for clarification and he added some things.
thats what i figured
im almost curious to know if i can file at this point without even being terminated. i could have a good one here. i really dont want it to affect it though if i just leave i may wave my rights. if they are smart they wont terminate me, but i sure would like to know if can anyways.
this just gets better and better, the veterans affairs have just diagnosed me with PTSD and some other stuff because of what I've been through in the Military with a screening they did... they prescribed medication already. do i have to tell them at work about this really cause i wanna know if it could affect me being medically discharged. they have about 6 other things they have to check buy they are all minor with my disabilities but I'm wondering how that affects anything.
it only affects me if I take the medication, which I don't plan to do especially at the moment. there are some harsh side effects.... nausea dizziness, drowsiness etc.... Ill basically be out of it. so I don't plan to take it. even though the doc office re-sent the med questionnaire for clarification I wonder what could be a good response to that. cause that questionnaire is obviously a counter to the fmla. at this point i would only have to appeal to the civil service if they push for a termination cause they can't medically separate me like they had planned.
its weird because in the fmla paperwork it says after the approval they can ask for a medical questionairre and they can ask for another opinion from another doctor. they are now trying to get a doctor to speak with my doctor instead of having me to see a doctor for a second opinion. i dont think they can do that. because if i disagree with that doctors opinion we are supposed to agree on a third doctor. im gonna review the fmla paperwork but i didnt think they could do that. they want me to sign something authorizing their doctor to speak with mine. i feel like thats goin to far with it on their part.
it says an employer can only request authenticity if the certification is incomplete and after they have given me an opportunity to correct the discrepancies if there are any. July 18th is the day they gave it to me to have completed so I wrote that as the date for the medical certification. i signed july 19th. they want me to change july 18th to july 30th on a new document, because thats the day the doc signed it, and thats a part of their game plan. its to have me to refuse to sign it and give authorizaton so they can deny the whole thing. i researched it, but i think its somethin else to it. The medical questionnaire. That same question, can he meet the log in time.. ( and then lie saying i have an hour and 20 minutes available when its really only 19 minutes.)
FMLA allows a second and a third opinion. I have read it. They are trying to negate the first opinion, which is the reason for the medical questionnaire. The question is can I perform all functions. Yes = termination, no = medical separation. They want either a yes or no answer which they could not get from the medical quesitonnaire. so they are calling my doc to speak with him and get a yes or no answer and im going to request all shared information. i cant figure out why they are trying to speak with him versus getting something on paper. that is very curious to me.
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