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Practices + Industries

Employment Litigation

Overview

Turner Padget’s Employment Litigation Practice Group provides litigation services to management in all employment and labor-related matters. Our clients range from large complex corporations with employees that number in the thousands to mid-level and small businesses with detailed employment requirements and benefits. Our legal services to our clients in this area include:

  • Administrative Hearings and Appeals
  • Employee Handbooks
  • Employment Contracts
  • Employment Discrimination and Harassment
  • Employment Torts
  • ERISA
  • FMLA Compliance
  • Hiring and Discharge
  • Non-Compete, Trade Secrets and Restrictive Covenants
  • Retaliation
  • Sexual Harassment Claims
  • Wage and Hour

Employment law requires a team of seasoned and knowledgeable professionals and Turner Padget has a team of professionals that have the experience and knowledge to serve our clients. We are proud that two members of our team, Frank Shuler and Reggie Belcher, are certified by the South Carolina Supreme Court as specialists in Employment/Labor Law, a designation that is earned by fewer than 1 percent of South Carolina attorneys.                                 

Representative Engagements

  • Obtained dismissal of the eight employment-based counts of a nine count complaint.  In a reported opinion, the court dismissed all of the claims arising from the former employee’s termination.  The opinion was the first to address the attorney-client privilege as a basis for the tort of wrongful discharge in violation of public policy.
  • Obtained dismissal of all claims against an ERISA plan in lawsuits brought by the Department of Labor and class of former employees for alleged breach of fiduciary duty.
  • In Cribb v. Spatholt, 676 S.E.2d 706 (S.C. App. 2009), the plaintiff sued his former employer, Boundary House Restaurant, and its owners, seeking substantial damages and alleging wrongful termination, breach of contract, and violation of South Carolina’s Payment of Wages Act. The defendant won a motion to dismiss on jurisdictional grounds, and the South Carolina Court of Appeals affirmed the lower court’s ruling. The published case has precedential value in subsequent cases involving personal jurisdiction and South Carolina’s long-arm statute.
  • The plaintiff sued his former employer alleged religious discrimination in violation of Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. The case involved arcane and complex legal issues regarding an employee’s right to a religious accommodation, undue hardship on an employer, and the balance between an individual’s sincerely held religious belief as opposed to a mere personal preference related to religion.  This case was unique as the employee requested time off for Good Friday as a religious accommodation. Few (if any) reported cases specifically address this issue in the employment context, and no Christian denomination requires abstention from work on Good Friday as a doctrinal rule.  The magistrate issued a report and recommendation in the employer’s favor.  The case was subsequently settled.
  • Two plaintiffs sued their former employer alleging discrimination in violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (“ADEA”).  As with many age-related cases, the alleged damages were substantial, as many older workers tend to earn more than younger workers, thereby significantly increasing demands for back pay and front pay in ADEA cases.  This case also involves the unique issue of whether a claimant’s pursuit of Social Security disability benefits renders him ineligible to recover back pay and front pay under the ADEA (as opposed to the more common situation involving the Americans with Disabilities Act).  We mounted a strong defense and the employer was able to settle on very favorable terms.