Employment Law Attorney

Thompson Burton’s labor and employment attorneys represent companies and individuals in resolving work-related disputes. We thoroughly understand all details of Tennessee labor laws as well as federal employment laws, including the Family Medical Leave Act, Equal Employment Opportunity Laws, and the Fair Labor Standards Act. We provide clients with litigation defense or avoidance, whether they are employees or business executives. Our attorneys also review employment contracts and other documentation to ensure business owners meet all legal requirements.  

Employee Discrimination Cases

If you face discrimination from your employer, contact us. We are dedicated to defending Tennessee employees who experience wrongful treatment at work. Employee discrimination is illegal as stated by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, whether it is due to gender, race, religion, physical or mental disability, pregnancy, or age discrimination in the workplace. You are entitled to your employee rights, including the right against discrimination.  

Family Medical Leave Act Violations

The Family Medical Leave Act protects covered employers and eligible employees who provide and receive family medical leave. Employees who qualify for the Family Medical Leave Act receive up to 12 weeks of unpaid time off with the continuation of group health benefits. Upon returning to work, individuals resume their job or begin an equivalent role. Violating these policies, whether as an employer refusing benefits or an employee wrongly obtaining leave, is illegal and will result in repercussions.

Fair Pay Disputes

The Fair Labor Standards Act is in place to ensure that all employees receive correct pay. When employers fail to pay overtime compensation, wrongly classify individuals as exempt, or do not provide agreed-upon wages, they violate the Fair Labor Standards Act and can face lawsuits. If you believe you’re receiving unfair pay, our labor and employment attorneys will proudly represent you.

Contact Us for Labor and Employment Law Services

Our employment lawyers at Thompson Burton serve residents throughout the state of Tennessee. If you have any questions about your employee rights, state or federal employment laws, or need representation for litigation, don’t hesitate to contact our law firm. We have extensive experience in labor and employment law and are dedicated to serving our community.

Workplace Safety: OSHA Recommendations for Black Friday

Black Friday.  I use to avoid it like the plague.  Then, my cousins started to request items like trampolines and PlayStations.  A dutiful niece, I began to stand in line until the wee hours of the morning, holding onto my sanity with one hand and a life-size Barbie Dreamhouse with the other. Speaking from personal experience, Black Friday can be terrifying. Massive crowds and super savings often result in chaos and potential injury to customers.  But, safety risks are not limited to the bargain shoppers. Businesses too face challenges to ensure that their employees are kept safe during holiday shopping.  To assist employers in this process, last week, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration provided advice to retail employers, urging them to implement safety measures to prevent workplace injuries on Black Friday.   As explained by David Michaels, Assistant Secretary of Labor of OSHA: “During the hectic […]

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Don’t Be Fooled – The NLRA Applies to Non-Union Workplaces

It is a common misconception that the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”) does not apply to businesses that lack union involvement. In fact, an employee does not have to be in a union to be protected by the NLRA; employees at union and non-union workplaces have the right to share information amongst the workforce and seek to improve their working conditions.  Specifically, the NLRA provides employees with the right to form or join unions and engage in protected, concerted activities to address and improve working conditions.  A “protected concerted activity” is an endeavor that involves two or more employees taking action for the mutual aid or protection of a group regarding the terms and conditions of their employment.  For example, if two employees communicate on Facebook regarding their assigned wages, they are engaged in a “protected, concerted activity.”  An employees’ activities are not “concerted,” however, if the action is undertaken […]

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Indecent Proposal In the Workplace

At least once per week, I remind clients that Tennessee is an employment at-will state.  “An employee may be fired for a good reason, a bad reason, or no reason at all,” I remind Mr. or Ms. So and So.  In other words, your employer can terminate you for a really bad, but not unlawful reason.  Similarly, an employee may quit his or her job, without advance notice or explanation. Recently, a good example of the “employment at-will” principle arose in connection with an employment discrimination case out of Florida. Michael Richardson worked at Bay District Schools in The Sunshine State for many years under the direct supervision of Jimmy Thompson. Jimmy was, well, a creep. He had a thing for Richardson’s wife and continually tried to solicit sex from her through promises made to her husband.  Among other explicit requests, Jimmy offered money to Richardson if he could convince his wife […]

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The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee granted summary judgment on all discrimination, harassment and retaliation claims asserted against a Thompson Burton client in the staffing industry. The case demonstrates that regardless of how harmless an employer might view conduct complained of by an employee or how bizarre an employer might view the employee’s complaints, if an employer responds appropriately to address the complaints it stands a decent chance of having the lawsuit dismissed. The Court’s ruling can be read in its entirety here. In this case, the Plaintiff alleged an assortment of inappropriate conduct by her manager, which Plaintiff argued created a hostile working environment in an office with only 3 employees, all of which are female. The conduct complained of by Plaintiff included: Discussion of undergarment preferences in office Lifting of a shirt to show a particular type of bra worn by supervisor, where […]

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Why Complete and Accurate Job Descriptions are Important under the ADA

Wayne Henschel was employed as an excavator operator for a county road commission when he was seriously injured in a non-work related motorcycle accident.  Ultimately, his leg had to be amputated above the knee.  As you might imagine, he missed a great deal of time from work.  While Mr. Henschel was off work his employer advertised for and filled his position until he could return to work. After recovering from his injuries, Mr. Henschel asked to return to work as an excavator operator.  Before being allowed to do so, Mr. Henschel underwent a fitness for duty examination, in which his ability to perform the essential job functions was evaluated. The excavator operated by Mr. Henschel was delivered to work sites via a trailer that was pulled by a manual transmission semi-truck.  While Mr. Henschel was cleared to return to work, he could only operate an automatic transmission vehicle. Because he […]

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