In 2011, the Supreme Court seized the opportunity to weigh in on
several novel and pressing employment issues—all of which
affect roofing contractors. Heeding the Supreme Court's recent
rulings will ensure your workplace is well-positioned to survive
any resulting legal claims.
Before 2011, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act only protected
from retaliation an employee who opposed his or her
employer's discriminatory employment practice; filed a charge of
discrimination; or participated in an investigation, proceeding or
hearing relating to a discrimination charge. In Thompson v.
North American Stainless LP, the Supreme Court expanded the
scope of an employer's liability for retaliation claims under Title
VII to include claims by a third party who has not personally
engaged in protected activity but is closely connected to an
employee who has.
Eric Thompson and his fiancée, Miriam Regalado, both
worked for North American Stainless (NAS). Regalado previously had
filed a discrimination charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity
Commission (EEOC) against NAS. Three weeks after NAS received
notice of Regalado's EEOC charge, Thompson was fired. Thompson sued
NAS under Title VII, alleging NAS fired him in retaliation for
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