February 10, 2013
Texas Federal Court Applies Hybrid Employee Status Test In Disco Case
A former legal support service worker fired one year after ending a romantic relationship with her boss showed sufficient evidence of employee status to proceed with her sex discrimination, sexual harassment, retaliation, and wage claims. (Fontenot v. Brouillette,S.D. Tex., No. 4:10-CV-01053, 1/15/13).
Partially denying summary judgment, the court holds that plaintiff presented enough facts to raise a question of whether she was as an “employee” under Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the Fair Labor Standards Act, instead of an independent contractor.
The court found that plaintiff provided sufficient proof that her former manager and six energy companies had the right to control her work performance, according to the “hybrid economic realities/common law control test” adopted by the Fifth Circuit. A copy of the case can be found here.
Mitchell H. Rubinstein