Recent Blog Posts

Fifth Circuit Finds That a “Fried Chicken” Joke Was Racist

The Fifth Circuit’s decision in Autry v. Fort Bend Independent School District, No. 11-20639 (5th Cir. Jan. 7, 2013), raised eyebrows for reasons that had nothing to do with its ultimate outcome.  The plaintiff (who is black) claimed that he was denied a promotion due to racial discrimination.  The School District acknowledged that it hired a… Read More »

Fifth Circuit Finds Evidence of Pretext in a Supervisor’s Expression of Animus Against Older Employees and Applies the “Cat’s Paw” Rule

The Fifth Circuit is often unsympathetic to appeals from summary judgments against employees in discrimination cases.  However, on February 1, 2013, we saw an exception, when the Fifth Circuit overturned a summary judgment in Chambers v. Sodexo, Inc., No. 12-60232 (5th Cir. Feb. 1, 2013) (not for publication). This was an age discrimination case.  The plaintiff… Read More »

Does the “Mixed Motive” Rule Apply in Title VII Retaliation Cases? The Supreme Court Will Decide.

In January 2013, the United States Supreme Court granted review in a case that could determine whether a plaintiff can win a Title VII retaliation claim under a “mixed motive” theory. To explain the significance of this development, it is useful to start by examining the legal rules for retaliation claims. Suppose that a Title… Read More »

Texas Supreme Court: No Prima Facie Case When the Plaintiff Is Replaced by an Older Worker

The Texas Supreme Court has decided few employment discrimination cases.  One of the most significant cases that the Texas Supreme court has decided is Mission Consolidated Independent School District v. Garcia, 372 S.W.3d 629 (Tex. 2012).  This was an age discrimination case decided under Chapter 21 of the Texas Labor Code.  (For some peculiar reason,… Read More »

Texas Supreme Court: Reporting Illegal Activity to a Supervisor Does Not Satisfy the Whistleblower Statute

The Texas Supreme Court decided two cases today that address whistleblower rights under the Texas Whistleblower Act.  The Act provides protections for whistleblowers who work for the state government.  Normally, a suit against a state government entity would be barred by sovereign immunity.  The Act provides an exemption from sovereign immunity and allows a whistleblower suit, but only if… Read More »

A Quick Guide to the Family and Medical Leave Act

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is the federal statute that guarantees employees the right to unpaid leave in the event of certain family and medical issues.  This can be an important right for many employees, and it can also be a source of significant liability to employers.  Both employers and employees should seek… Read More »

How Do You Prove a Discrimination Claim in Texas?

There are many types of discrimination claims under federal law and Texas law, including race discrimination, sex discrimination, religious discrimination, age discrimination, disability discrimination, discrimination based on genetic information, and others.  So how do you prove a discrimination claim? In a perfect world, you would have direct evidence of discrimination.  For example, if your company… Read More »

When Do You Have a Wrongful Termination Claim Against Your Texas Employer?

If your employer fires you, then you may have a legal remedy in the form of a suit for wrongful termination.  To assess whether you have a claim, a Texas employment lawyer will ask you several threshold questions: 1.         Did you have a written employment contract?  Most people do not have written contracts, but if… Read More »

Welcome to our blog

Welcome to the Law Offices of David C. Holmes blog. Our law firm handles all aspects of Texas employment law, including gender discrimination, age discrimination, sexual harassment, whistleblower rights and wrongful termination. Our office is located in Houston, and we represent clients in and around Houston, Tomball and Fort Bend, Harris and Montgomery Counties. We… Read More »