Laws tagged posts

The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership – 5 Week Mastermind Group (Online Workshop)

The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership – 5 Week Mastermind Group (Online Workshop)
Event on 2018-01-02 19:00:00
Are you willing to invest 5 weeks to educate yourself to become a better leader? No matter where you are in the leadership process, this Virtual Mastermind Group will help you become a better leader. Each law is your blueprint to success as a leader and when incorporated, they will help you influence and inspire those you lead or desire to lead. REGISTER TODAY! – That’s a week for a priceless experience. This training meets 5 times. Attendees are expected to attend all 5 sessions to raise their leadership lid and to increase their organizational influence.Tue, Dec 5, 2017 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM ESTTue, Dec 12, 2017 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM ESTTue, Dec 19, 2017 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM ESTTue, Dec 26, 2017 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM ESTTue, Jan 2, 2018 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM EST The Bottom Line in Leadership Isn't How Far We Advance Ourselves, but How Far We Advance Others For more information, visit: www.anderson.training/21Laws For more virtual training opportunites, visit: www.actnow.training

at Dallas, Texas, United States
Dallas, Texas, United States
Dallas, United States

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NEWS INVESTIGATION: How Mega-Ministries [and small ones too] Abuse TAX LAWS

STORY LINK: tinyurl.com | It’s hard to miss one of St. Charles Parish’s largest home construction projects ever. It’s a mansion being built by Jesse Duplantis Ministries. When done, it’s expected to be the home of the head of that ministry, Jesse Duplantis. Another televangelist, White…
Video Rating: 5 / 5

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can debt collectors sue in the state of texas or garnish your wages. what are the laws in texas?

Question by clsmith34: can debt collectors sue in the state of texas or garnish your wages. what are the laws in texas?
in texas, can debt collectors sue? can they garnish wages. a collection agency out of california mentioned to me that they can issue a summons if i don’t agree to pay.

Best answer:

Answer by rcdrury
They can sue, and can normally withdraw from a bank account upon court award; but they cannot garnish wages for consumer debt in Texas.

.

What do you think? Answer below!

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What are the laws in regards to smoking and public places in Texas?

Question by I Block Stupid People: What are the laws in regards to smoking and public places in Texas?
Where I live they have a statewide ban on smoking inside any public building. The only exception is the Indian casinos. Does Texas have a similar ban or can you still smoke inside some businesses?

Best answer:

Answer by Your Highness
There’s no statewide ban….just all restaurants have to have a non-smoking section, and no smoking on school grounds. That’s it as far as I know.

In some specific cities there are bans on smoking inside public places though.

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Misuse of Dowry Laws

Misuse of Dowry Laws

MISUSE OF ANTI DOWRY LAWS IN INDIA…by Bharat

“A happy marriage is a harbour in the tempest of life, an unhappy marriage is a tempest in the harbour of life”
Dowry is one of the biggest social evils facing our country, and no civilized society should tolerate this, and every effort should be made to eradicate this evil, people giving and demanding dowry should be punished severely, But other side of the coin, often unlooked upon should not be ignored. And this side of the coin – is the misuse of these provisions by some unscrupulous wives to wreak havoc on husband and family.

In recent years the criminal law of the land have undergone radical changes to provide protection to women, more teeth have been provided to existing laws (DP Act, 498A, 406 IPC etc) and new enactments have been made (DV Act), but unfortunately the remedy is becoming worse than the ailment, which is now a well known fact as the stringent dowry laws have failed to stop the gruesome crimes for dowry/dowry deaths.

These laws which have been proved to be highly unsuccessful (as evident from the low conviction rate) and far from what the law makers desired it to be, are now being misused by some urban women for ulterior motives.

The henious nature of these laws (498-a, 406) does nothing but to help the unlawful implementation. As these laws are non compoundable & non bailable, the chances of reconciliation between the spouses after litigation are next to nil.

The biased nature of this laws is evident from that fact that unlike almost all laws in INDIA the burden to prove innocence lies on the accused……this means as soon as the complaint is made..whichever persons are named in the complaint are accused in the eyes of law, Isn’t this verdict before trial, now lets embark upon what Section 498 A is :
Section 498a of the IPC is a criminal law in which the wife and her parental family can charge any or all of the husband’s family of physical or mental cruelty.

This law is unique to India, it not only discriminates based on gender (man Vs. woman), but also discriminates against women based on their relationship with the husband.

Typically, the charged family members in these cases include:
• Mostly women of all ages (unmarried, married sisters of the husband, his mother and sisters-in-law, elderly grandmothers and aunts)
• Other maternal and paternal relatives and even young children in the family.
For every complaint filed by a woman, there are at least twice as many or more women are accused although the married couple may have never lived with any of the people mentioned in the criminal complaint.

Characteristics of 498-a, Indian Penal Code.
IPC-498a is

• Cognizable – The accused can be arrested and jailed without warrant or investigation
• Non-Compoundable – The complaint cannot be withdrawn by the petitioner (chances of living together again are lost)
• Non-Bailable – The accused must appear in the court to request bail
On a single complaint of the wife, the husband and his entire family can be packed off to behind the bars, with an estimated 40,000 such accusations per year and an average of 5 members of the husband’s family implicated in each of these 498-a cases, about 200,000/- people are directly affected by these cases.

Hon’ble Supreme Court and various High Courts have time & again showed concern over this growing menace by observing that “By misuse of the provision (IPC 498a – Dowry and Cruelty Law) a new legal terrorism can be unleashed. The provision is intended to be used a shield and not an assassin’s weapon… says the Hon’ble Supreme Court. Merely because the provision is declared constitutional, it does not give licence to unscrupulous persons to wreak personal vendetta [1]

The judicial recognition of blatant misuse of these laws is not anew, way back in 1987, The Hon’ble Court In BALBIR SINGH VS. THE STATE OF PUNJAB [2] observed :
“Though the amendments introduced in the penal code are with the laudable object of eradicating the evil of Dowry, such provisions cannot be allowed to be misused by the parents and the relatives of a psychopath wife who may have chosen to end her life for reason which may be many other than cruelty. The glaring reality cannot be ignored that the ugly trend of false implications in view to harass and blackmail an innocent spouse and his relatives, i.e. fast emerging. IT IS THE TIME TO STOP THIS UNHEALTY TREND WHICH RESULTS IN UNNECCESARY MISERY AND TORTURE TO NUMEROUS EFFECTED PERSONS.”

Justice J.D.Kapoor (Delhi High Court) said in his order passed on 30th May, 2003 [3]
” I feel constrained to comment upon the misuse of the provisions 
(of law) to such an extent that it is hitting at the foundation of marriage itself and has proved to be not so good for the health of the society at large.”

“There is a growing tendency to come out with inflated and exaggerated allegations, roping in each and every relation of the husband.

In Jasbir Kaur v/s State of Haryana[4] : the Punjab & Haryana high Court rightly observed that an estranged wife will go to any extent to rope in as many relatives of the husband as possible in a desperate effort to salvage whatever remains on an estranged marriage.

In Kanaraj vs. State of Punjab [5] the Hon’ble Apex Court observed:
“for the fault of the husband the in-laws or other relatives cannot in all cases be held to be involved. The acts attributed to such persons have to be proved beyond reasonable doubt and they cannot be held responsible by mere conjectures and implications. The tendency to rope in relatives of the husband as accused has to be curbed”

Karnataka High Court, in the case of State Vs. Srikanth [6] observed “Roping in of the whole of the family including brothers and sisters-in-law has to be depreciated unless there is a specific material against these persons, it is down right on the part of the police to include the whole of the family as accused”

The Hon’ble Supreme Court, In Mohd. Hoshan vs. State of A.P. [7], observed “Whether one spouse has been guilt of cruelty to the other is essentially a question of fact. The impact of complaints, accusation or taunts on a person amounting to cruelty depends on various factors like the sensitivity of the victim concerned, the social background, the environment, education etc. Further, mental cruelty varies from person to person depending on the intensity of the sensitivity, degree of courage and endurance to withstand such cruelty. Each case has to be decided on its own facts whether mental cruelty is made out”

Delhi high Court, in Savitri Devi vs. Ramesh Chand [8], categorically stated “These provisions were though made with good intentions but the implementation has left a very bad taste and the move has been counter productive. There is a growing tendency amongst the women which is further perpetuated by their parents and relatives to rope in each and every relative including minors and even school going kids nearer or distant relatives and in some cases against every person of the family of the husband whether living away or in other town or abroad and married, unmarried sisters, sisters-in-law, unmarried brothers, married uncles and in some cases grand parents or as many as 10 o 15 or even more relatives of the husband.”

Punjab and Haryana High Court, in Bhupinder Kaur and others vs. State of Punjab and others[9], held :
“From the reading of the FIR, it is evident that there is no specific allegation of any act against petitioners Nos.2 and 3, which constitute offence under s.498-A I.P.C. I am satisfied that these two persons have been falsely implicated in the present case, who were minors at the time of marriage and even at the time of lodging the present FIR. Neither of these two persons was alleged to have been entrusted with any dowry article nor they alleged to have ever demanded any dowry article. No specific allegation of demand of dowry, harassment and beating given to the complainant by the two accused has been made. The allegations made are vague and general. Moreover, it cannot be ignored that every member of the family of the husband has been implicated in the case. The initiation of criminal proceedings against them in the present case is clearly an abuse of the process of law”

The Hon’ble Supreme Court, in a relatively recent case, Sushil Kumar Sharma vs. Union of India and others[10]

“The object of the provision is prevention of the dowry menace. But as has been rightly contented by the petitioner that many instances have come to light where the complaints are not bonafide and have been filed with oblique motive. In such cases acquittal of the accused does not in all cases wipe out the ignominy suffered during and prior to trial. Sometimes adverse media coverage adds to the misery. The question, therefore, is what remedial measures can be taken to prevent abuse of the well-intentioned provision. Merely because the provision is constitutional and intra vires, does not give a licence to unscrupulous persons to wreck personal vendetta or unleash harassment. It may, therefore, become necessary for the legislature to find out ways how the makers of frivolous complaints or allegations can be appropriately dealt with. Till then the Courts have to take care of the situation within the existing frame work.

But by misuse of the provision a new legal terrorism can be unleashed. The provision is intended to be used a shield and not an assassin’s weapon. If cry of “wolf” is made too often as a prank assistance and protection may not be available when the actual “wolf” appears. There is no question of investigating agency and Courts casually dealing with the allegations. They cannot follow any straitjacket formula in the matters relating to dowry tortures, deaths and cruelty. It cannot be lost sight of that ultimate objective of every legal system is to arrive at truth, punish the guilty and protect the innocent. There is no scope for any pre-conceived notion or view. It is strenuously argued by the petitioner that the investigating agencies and the courts start with the presumptions that the accused persons are guilty and that the complainant is speaking the truth. This is too wide available and generalized statement. Certain statutory presumptions are drawn which again are rebuttable. It is to be noted that the role of the investigating agencies and the courts is that of watch dog and not of a bloodhound. It should be their effort to see that an innocent person is not made to suffer on account of unfounded, baseless and malicious allegations. It is equally undisputable that in many cases no direct evidence is available and the courts have to act on circumstantial evidence. While dealing with such cases, the law laid down relating to circumstantial evidence has to be kept in view.”

Justice Malimath Committee on Reforms of Criminal Justice System, Government of India, Ministry of Home Affairs, 2003 observed the following and gave the recommendation to amend the law immediately:
“16.4.4 In less tolerant impulsive woman may lodge an FIR even on a trivial act. The result is that the husband and his family may be immediately arrested and there may be a suspension or loss of job. The offence alleged being non-bailable, innocent persons languish in custody. There may be a claim for maintenance adding fuel to fire, if the husband cannot pay. She may change her mind and get into the mood to forget and forgive. The husband may realize the mistakes committed and come forward to turn a new leaf for a loving and cordial relationship. The woman may like to seek reconciliation. But this may not be possible due to the legal obstacles. Even if she wishes to make amends by withdrawing the complaint, she can not do so as the offence is non compoundable. The doors for returning to family life stand closed. She is thus left at the mercy of her natal family.

It Is pertinent to note here that, the real sufferers of the evil of dowry, the rural indian women are not even sensitized about their rights, and fail to make use of these laws.

But Some Indian Urban educated women have turned the tables and are using these laws as weapon to unleash personal vendetta on their husbands and innocent relatives.

Despite the various guidelines/recommendations of the Supreme Court of India and Justice Malimath Committee that the working of these laws should be reviewed and reformed with change in time, so that innocents are protected, and false complaints made with malafide intention are not registered, the suggested amendment to the law has been largely ignored. Unconstrained, this social evil is threatening the foundation of the Indian Family system. Feminists are now demanding even more teeth to the existing women laws, and more & more laws are being enacted for women. But the real sufferers are not sentisized enough to make use of these laws, and these laws are getting misused in the hands of some clever Indian wives.

The latest addition in a women’s legal artillery is The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act – This law is absolutely pro-women and anti-men, this law assumes every man as a virtual torturer” and considers only women as victims. This law is highly vague, and speaks of verbal/economical & emotional abuse, which are impossible to quantify & ascertain. Many husbands and their family members, falsely implicated in these cases have committed suicide after being jailed, unable to bear the social trauma.

Nearly 44.7% of the suicide victims were married males while only 25% were married females. This clearly shows the ratio of victims of domestic violence and gender abuse.[11]

It is high time for law makers/law enforcing agencies/judges to pay heed and review these laws in public interest to check the growing misuse of these laws to ensure impartial justice and to protect the pious and sacred institution of marriage.
________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
[1] http://www.hindu.com/2005/07/22/stories/2005072202631500.htm
[2] 1987 (1) CRIMES – 76. 
[3] ( 20 May 2003 ) 
[4] (1990)2 Rec Cri R 243
[5] 2000 CriLJ 2993
[6] 2002 CriLJ 3605
[7] 2002 CriLJ 4124
[8] 2003 CriLJ 2759
[9] 2003 CriLJ 3394
[10]JT 2005(6) 266
[11] Source: http://ncrb.nic.in/ADSI-03.pdf

 

Bharat Chugh * Law Student from Delhi * Convenor : Law Students Collective (a public interest initiative providing legal advise & Assistance to the weaker sections of the society)

& associated with Men Cell (www.mencell.weebly.com)

Article from articlesbase.com

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“Cashing In: New Credit & Debit Card Laws and You”, HOUSTON 8

This past February, new consumer credit card laws went into effect. The government says that they will tilt the playing field toward consumers by limiting some of the credit card industry’s most profitable and punitive practices. Consumer advocates favor it, but the card issuers warn it will drive up the credit card fees and limit their availability at a time when the country needs more spending to stimulate the economy. What do we need to know to get the most out of our credit and debit cards? How do these new policies affect us? And, will new regulations alter the way debt collectors go about reclaiming unpaid debt? Guest: Richard Alderman, “The People’s Lawyer”, Director, Center for Consumer Law, University of Houston; broadcast date August 13, 2010. www.houstonpbs.org

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Q&A: What are the copyright laws that restrain networks from broadcasting internationally?

Question by ZigaMoya: What are the copyright laws that restrain networks from broadcasting internationally?
Many (if not all) of the US television networks will not allow you watch their online episodes if you are outside of the US. ABC Family website says this is do to copyright laws. How does this work? Its the internet not another network.

Best answer:

Answer by Paula
I imagine the issue is that the network has not filed for copyright in the foreign country.

If they allowed the episode to be “watched” outside the U.S., then it could also be recorded at the same time, copies made, and sold outside the U.S. and the network would have no legal right to prevent this (thereby losing a lot of revenue).

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New CA Laws Include Health Reforms

New CA Laws Include Health Reforms
California will create an Internet-based insurance exchange to let consumers comparison-shop for affordable health insurance coverage under two of the many laws taking effect with the new year.
Read more on KCRA 3 Sacramento

Ringling Bros. Barnum & Bailey Circus Ticket Giveaway
It’s time for the circus, and CBS4 wants to send you for free. Register to win tickets for the Ringling Bros. Barnum & Bailey Circus in Miami at the American Airlines Arena starting January 7th! […]
Read more on CBS4 Miami

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Public School Law & Educational Laws and Policies, Employment Law, Contracts, Due Process, Dr. W.A. Kritsonis

Public School Law & Educational Laws and Policies, Employment Law, Contracts, Due Process, Dr. W.A. Kritsonis

 

William Allan Kritsonis, PhD
Professor

 

Public School Law & Educational Laws and Policies

 

 

 

EMPLOYMENT

 

 

INTRODUCTION

 

          When we speak of employment, we find that the public school system is the largest employer in the state of Texas. The full scope of the employment relationship examines the constitutional concept of due process of law, the different employment arrangements that are available to public schools in Texas, the hiring and firing process, and the legal issues that arise in that context (Walsh, Kemerer, and Maniotis, 2005).

 

          For the purpose of this report, we will present ten cases as they relate to the different employment arrangements found in public education. The findings are intended to be informative and beneficial in terms of “at-will employees”, “Non-Chapter 21 Contracts”, “probationary contracts”, “term contracts”, “continuing contracts”, and “third-party independent contractor.” 

 

Case One

 

United States Court of Appeals,

Fifth Circuit.

 

Emilio MONTEZ, et al., Plaintiffs-Appellants,

v.

SOUTH ANTONIO INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT, Defendant-Appellee

No. 87 – 5501

                       

LITIGANTS

 

Plaintiffs-Appellants: Emilio Montez, et. al

 

Defendant-Appellee: SOUTH San Antonio INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT

 

BACKGROUND

 

In 1979 Montez was hired to teach in the Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps program. Montez has never been certified as a teacher by the responsible authorities of the State of Texas. His initial employment was validated on October 15, 1979 when the Texas Education Agency issued him an Emergency Teaching Permit. That permit expired on August 31, 1980 and was never reissued. Montez continued to work until September 1985 when he was notified of the anticipated termination of his employment. After two hearings before the school district authorities, Montez was discharged at the end of the 1985-86 school year.

 

FACTS

 

Emilio Montez appeals a summary judgment rejecting his claims under the Fifth and Fourteenth amendments and 42 U.S.C. series 1983. He alleges wrongful termination by the SAN ANTONIO ISD of his employment as an instructor in the JROTC program. The district court found no genuine issue of material fact and concluded that Montez had not been denied due process as relates to a claimed property interest.

 

The United States District Court for the Western District of Texas, at San Antonio, H. F. Garcia, J., granted summary judgment against instructor. Instructor appealed.

 

DECISION

 

In order to establish due process deprivation of property interest under the Fourteenth Amendment, plaintiff must establish that he had “legitimate claim of entitlement” to that interest. Montez who was hired to teach in the JROTC program was employed under “continuing contracts” after his emergency teaching permit expired.

 

When he was subsequently discharged by the school district, it was determined that he was not “teacher”, for purposes of Texas “tenure law” granting “teachers” legitimate claim of entitlement to, and protection under the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The instructor never held required permanent teaching certificate, and any contract purporting to give instructor more than that allowed by Texas law was beyond the power of the school district and could not bestow property interest on instructor.

 

Montez contends that, even if his contracts were not valid, the circumstances surrounding his employment gave him property interest in his job because he relied on the words “continuing contract”, and he was never notified of the certificate requirement. This contention overlooks the Hornbook rubric that knowledge of the law is presumed.

 

Montez asserts estoppel, but that claim also founders. Estoppel cannot be used to create a contract right where none exists. Further, estoppel may be asserted only rarely against a governmental entity. Nor may Montez advance a claim of deprivation of a liberty interest. He had two hearings before the school authorities prior to his termination. Liberty interests are not implicated.

 

DICTA

 

The Court of Appeals, Politz, Circuit Judge, held that: (1) instructor was not “teacher” for purposes of Texas tenure law granting “teachers” Fourteenth Amendment interest in their jobs; (2) instructor failed to demonstrate facts sufficient to establish that circumstances surrounding his employment gave him “property” interest in his job; (3) instructor could not prevail on estoppel theory; and (4) instructor’s liberty interests were not implicated.

 

IMPLICATIONS

 

Montez’s brief pointedly focuses on what appears to be a gap in the Texas Education Code’s coverage as respects the treatment accorded JROTC instructors. Montez’s complaints should be addressed to the Texas legislature. It is not cognizable as a constitutional or civil rights claim in this forum.

 

 

Case Two

 

LITIGANTS

 

United States District Court, N. D. Texas, Dallas Division.

                             Chris BARBRE (Plaintiff)

                                      V.

GARLAND INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT, the Board of Trustees of the Garland Independent School District, Doug Butler, Charles Cooper, Ronnie Rogers, R. E. Dodson, Harry Hill, Jim Kennedy and Darwin Morris, Eli Douglas, Charles Price and W. E. Peters (Defendants)

No. CA 3 – 77 – 0187 – C

 

 

BACKGROUND

 

The plaintiff, Chris Barbre, a former untenured teacher’s aide at Garland Independent School District, brings her main claim under 42 U.S.C. series 1983, and under the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, alleging that her employment was not renewed because of her protected First Amendment speech.  The plaintiff also brings procedural due process claims under the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments of the U.S. Constitution, and under 42 U.S.C. series 1981.

 

The individual defendants, all of them officials of the Garland Independent School District, are sued individually and in their official capacities. The plaintiff seeks reinstatement, back wages, actual and exemplary damages and attorney’s fees and costs. In addition, the plaintiff seeks to have “all references to her alleged ‘disloyalty’, termination and non-renewal,” expunged from her employment records.

 

FACTS

 

Former untenured teacher’s aide’s speech at school board meeting was not protected by First Amendment, where nature of aide’s communications related to immediate terms and conditions of her employment, and only tangentially to matters of public concern, aide’s communications raised questions of maintaining either discipline by immediate superiors or harmony among co-workers, aide’s relationship with superior was such that certain forms of public criticism of him by her would seriously undermine effectiveness of working relationship between them, aide’s speech impeded proper performance of her daily duties, and aide could have achieved her purposes in less disruptive ways.

 

DECISION

 

Contention of former teacher’s aide that she was terminated without procedural due process provided no basis for relief. There was no basis to hold that there was any property interest in aide’s employment contract, so as to entitle her to procedural safeguards, because she did not have any type of tenure.

Reasons for termination or non-renewal of a public employee  that are not made public cannot form basis of claim that a due process “liberty” interest has been impaired, so as to entitle public employee to procedural safeguards.

 

A public employee does not have a claim under Fourteenth Amendment denial of a hearing on his non-renewal, when disclosure of his employment file would amount to stigmatization, unless he asserts that report in files is substantially false and thus deprives him of protected liberty interest.

 

After considering all the evidence presented at trial, the pleadings, briefs and oral argument of counsel, the Court concludes that plaintiff fails to establish any violation of the U.S. Constitution or federal statutory law by the School District or its officials. The First Amendment claim, although plausible, does not succeed on the facts of this case, nor on applicable law. Therefore, the Court must deny plaintiff all requested relief.

 

DICTA

 

The District Court, William M. Taylor, J., held that: (1) under circumstances, aide’s speech at school board meeting was not protected by First Amendment, and (2) even if aide’s speech before and during school board meeting was protected by First Amendment, and even though such speech was a motivating factor in her non-renewal, her insubordination, subsequent to board meeting, was a valid and separate explanation for her non-renewal apart from any of her prior expressions.

 

IMPLICATIONS

 

The First Amendment requires striking a balance between interests of teacher, as a citizen, in commenting upon matters of public concern and interest of state, as an employer, in promoting efficiency of public services it performs through its employees. Unless such balance favors state, it should not be permitted to punish a teacher for truthful speech, or for false speech made without malice or reckless disregard of truth.

 

 

   Case Three

 

LITIGANTS

 

United States Court of Appeals,

Fifth Circuit.

James W. Russell, Jr., Plaintiff-Appellant

v.

EL PASO INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT

et al., Defendants-Appellees.

No. 76-1836

 

BACKGROUND

 

A teacher, the plaintiff, whose employment contract was not renewed, filed this action alleging infringement of constitutionally protected rights under the First and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution and 42 U.S.C. series 1983 (1970). The district court dismissed the case on the pleadings because of the plaintiff’s failure (1) to exhaust his administrative remedies under Texas state law, and (2) to raise a substantial federal question. The United States District Court for the Western District of Texas at El Paso, William S. Sessions, J., dismissed the case on the pleadings and teacher appealed.

 

FACTS

 

     The parties to this appeal differ as to what is the applicable Texas law governing appellant’s employment contract with the El Paso District. Under Section 13.104 of the Texas Education Code (1972), the school board’s decision not to renew Russell’s contract would be “final and nonappealable.” Russell contends that this is the applicable statute. For that to be the case, however, it must be shown that the school board in question had adopted the tenure plan contained in Chapter 13 of the Education Code.  The contract in question was executed on August 24, 1973. It was not until December 13, 1973 that the Board of Trustees of the School District adopted the tenure plan. We see no reason to apply retroactively the terms of the tenure plan to an employment contract already in existence.

    

With regard to the substantiality of the federal question presented by Russell, it is important to note that the contract under which he was employed was for one year. More importantly, this was his first year of employment with the school district.

    

Similarly, there was no impermissible denial of a liberty interest. “Where a person’s good name, reputation, honor or integrity, is at stake because of what the government is doing to him, notice and an opportunity to be heard are essential.” Russell requested, and was given a full and fair hearing on this matter.

 

DECISION

 

Teacher employed for one year did not have a reasonable expectation of reemployment after the first year of employment. The teacher whose employment contract was not renewed and who requested and was given a full and fair hearing sustained no impermissible denial of liberty interest.

 

DICTA

 

The Court of Appeals, Gewin, Circuit Judge, held that terms of tenure plan adopted subsequent to execution of teacher’s contract would not be applied retroactively and adoption of the plan did not render applicable section of Education Code under which board’s decision not to renew teacher’s contract would be final and nonappealable. Teacher was required to exhaust administrative remedies; that teacher employed for one year had no reasonable expectation of reemployment; and that there was no impermissible denial of liberty interest.

 

IMPLICATIONS

 

The federal court is not the appropriate forum in which to review the multitude of personnel decisions that are made daily by public agencies. We must accept the harsh fact that numerous individual mistakes are inevitable in the day-to-day administration of our affairs. The United States Constitution cannot be feasibly construed to require federal judicial review for every such error. In the absence of any claim that the public employer was motivated by a desire to curtail or to penalize the exercise of an employee’s constitutionally protected rights, we must presume that official action was regular, and, if erroneous, can best be corrected in other ways. The Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment is not a guarantee against incorrect or ill-advised personnel decisions.

 

 

    Case Four

 

LITIGANTS

 

Court of Civil Appeals of Texas,

Corpus Christi.

Reynaldo RUIZ, Appellant,

v.

The STATE of Texas, Appellee

No. 1102

 

BACKGROUND

 

Reynaldo Ruiz was elected Justice of the Peace for Precinct 3, Place 2 in Hidalgo County, Texas, for a second term in November 1974 and has been discharging his duties as Justice of Peace since January 1, 1975. Ruiz has also been employed in a teaching capacity as ‘Coordinator of the Cooperative Part Time Training Program’ for the La Joya Independent School District, a job he has held since 1967. In September of 1975, the Hidalgo County Auditor and Treasurer, upon advice of the County Criminal District Attorney, began withholding the appellant’s pay checks for his services as Justice of Peace.

 

 

FACTS

         

Appeal was taken from an order of the 92nd District Court, Hidalgo County, Paul A. Martineau, J., declaring that the appellant was not qualified to be paid compensation as a justice of the peace while he also maintained employment as a public school teacher.

 

DECISION

 

Provision of Constitution prohibiting any person from holding more than one office of emolument specifically excepts justice of peace from dual emolument  prohibitions, and teacher was an employee rather than an “officer”; thus, person employed in teaching capacity for independent school district and who also served as elected justice of  peace was eligible to receive compensation for both positions.

 

DICTA

 

The Court of Civil Appeals, Nye, C. J., held that the constitutional provision prohibiting persons from holding more than one office of emolument specifically excepted from its prohibitions the office of the justice of the peace; and that the separation of powers provision of the Constitution did not prevent appellant from receiving a salary and serving as both a public school teacher and a justice of the peace. Reversed and rendered.

 

IMPLICATIONS

 

Separation of powers provision of the State Constitution did not prevent public school teacher from also serving and receiving salary as justice of peace where such person, as teacher, was not exercising sovereign powers of State, and where there was no evidence that his activities and duties as public school teacher interfered in any way with his constitutional duties as justice of peace.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   Case Five

 

LITIGANTS

 

IN THE SUPREME COURT OF TEXAS

No. 01- 0557

 

Midland Judicial District Community Supervision and Corrections

Department, Petitioner

v.

Ruthie Ann Jones, Respondent

 

On Petition for Review from the

Court of Appeals for the Eight District of Texas

 

 

BACKGROUND

 

On July 30, 1993, the Midland Judicial District Community Supervision and Corrections Department (CSCD) informed Ruthie Ann Jones that she had been hired as a Pretrial Services Administrative Technician III. At that time she was given a memorandum that stated that she would start work on August 9, 1993. The memorandum also discussed her salary. She would receive a starting monthly gross pay of ,558.00 in August; would be added to her pay starting 1/1/94; another increase effective 4/1/94; and she would have a monthly gross salary on 9/1/94. The salary figures were contingent upon her future performance evaluations and available county funding.

 

FACTS

 

In December 1993, Jones’ position was eliminated due to budget constraints. Jones filed suit against the CSCD, alleging wrongful termination and breach of employment contract. The trial court granted CSCD’s motion for summary judgment on the ground that Jones was an at-will employee. The court of appeals held that Jones’ employment was for a fixed term, reversed the trial court’s summary judgment, and remanded the case for trial.

 

DECISION

 

For well over a century, the general rule in this State, as in most jurisdictions, has been that absent a specific agreement to the contrary, employment may be terminated by the employer or the employee for good cause, bad cause or no cause at all.

The general statements indicating that Jones’ salary increases were contingent on “future performance evaluations and available county funding” do not indicate CSCD’s intent to be bound not to terminate her employment except under clearly specified circumstances. The court of appeals erred in concluding that the memo constituted a contract of employment for one year. The written form of CSCD’s general statements does not change the fact that they do not unequivocally indicate the required intent.

 

DICTA

 

“The issue in this case is whether the respondent’s employment with the petitioner was for a fixed term or at-will. Because we conclude that there was no fixed term of employment, we reverse the courts of appeal’s judgment and render judgment that the employee take nothing by her claims against the employer.

 

IMPLICATIONS

    

When a contract is made by the employer and the employee, the terms of employment have to be specific and clear and may not be subject to other interpretations in the future by either party.

 

Case Six

 

LITIGANTS

 

United States Court of Appeals,

Eight Circuit.

Frances FISHER, Appellee

v.

James SNYDER et al., Appellants

 

BACKGROUND

 

Mrs. Fisher, a middle-aged divorcee, was employed at the high school in Tyron, Nebraska from 1970 to 1972. Her married son, then 26 years old, lived and taught in the neighboring town of Stapleton, Nebraska. Mrs. Fisher lived alone in a one-bedroom apartment. On several occasions, young ladies, married couples, and young men who were friends of her son, visited Tyron. Because hotel and motel accommodations were generally sparse and unavailable in Tyron, Mrs. Fisher followed the advice of the secretary of the school board and allowed these guests to stay overnight at her apartment. Cliff Rowan, age 26, was a particularly frequent visitor. Rowan’s parents lived in California. He therefore, regularly visited Mrs. Fisher during his school vacation and at other times, and she referred to him as her second son.  In the spring of 1972, Rowan spent about a week in Tyron visiting school classes as a means of fulfilling certain of his college requirements. Mrs. Fisher made arrangements with school administrators for this visitation and it was reported in the local newspaper. Following Rowan’s visit, the school board notified Mrs. Fisher that her contract would not be renewed at the end of 1972 school year. At her request, pursuant to provisions of Nebraska law, the board afforded Mrs. Fisher a hearing relating to the notice of dismissal. Civil right action by school teacher whose contract was terminated because of alleged conduct unbecoming a teacher. The United States District Court for the District of Nebraska, Warren K. Urbom, Chief Judge, ordered reinstatement, and the board members appealed.

 

FACTS

         

Nebraska by statute requires that notice and a hearing be given non-tenured teachers who are to be terminated. The appellees concede that the school board, in dismissing Fisher, complied with the statute, and its judgment, therefore, must be afforded judicial deference “so long as the board does not act unreasonably, arbitrarily, capriciously or unlawfully.”

However, a high school teacher may successfully argue that his dismissal  was arbitrary and capricious if he can prove that each of the stated reasons  (underlying his dismissal) is trivial, or is unrelated to the educational process or to working relationships within the educational institution or is wholly unsupported by a basis in fact.

         

Thus, while a school board may legitimately inquire into the character and integrity of its teachers, it must be certain that it does not arbitrarily or capriciously dismiss a teacher based on unsupported conclusions drawn from such inquiries.

 

DECISION

 

That middle-aged divorced  high school teacher, who inquired of school board’s secretary and was advised to keep guests in her one bedroom apartment because other accommodations were limited, had overnight guests did not provide basis in fact for inference by school board of rural Nebraska county district that there was strong potential for sexual misconduct. Thus, inference that teacher’s activity was social misbehavior not conducive to maintenance of integrity of school system was arbitrary and capricious and was an impermissible reason for terminating employment.

 

 

 

DICTA

 

The Court of Appeals, Bright, Circuit Judge, held that fact that middle-aged divorced high school teacher, who inquired of school board’s secretary and was advised to keep guests in her one-bedroom apartment because other accommodations were limited, had overnight guests did not provide basis in fact for inference by school board of rural Nebraska county district that there was strong potential for sexual misconduct.

 

Thus, board’s inference that teacher’s activity was social misbehavior not conducive to maintenance of integrity of public school system was arbitrary and capricious and was an impermissible reason for terminating employment. Judgment affirmed.

                  

IMPLICATIONS

 

High school teacher’s  dismissal is arbitrary and capricious if each of stated reasons underlying dismissal is trivial, or is unrelated to educational process or to working relationships within educational institution or is wholly unsupported by a basis in fact.

    

Though school board may legitimately inquire into character and integrity of its teachers, it may not arbitrarily or capriciously dismiss teacher based on unsupported conclusions drawn from such inquiries.

     Case Seven

 

LITIGANTS

 

BOARD OF REGENTS OF STATE COLLEGES ET AL. – Appellant

v.

David ROTH – Appellee

SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES

408 U.S. 564 (1972)

 

BACKGROUND

In 1968, David Roth was hired for his first teaching job as assistant professor of political science at Wisconsin State University-Oshkosh. He was hired for a fixed term of one academic year. The notice of his faculty appointment specified that his employment would begin on September 1, 1968, and would end on June 30, 1969. Roth completed that term. But he was informed that he would not be rehired for the next academic year.

 

FACTS

David Roth had no tenure rights to continued employment. Under Wisconsin statutory law a state university teacher can acquire tenure as “permanent” employee only after four years of year-to-year employment. Having acquired tenure, a teacher is entitled to continued employment “during efficiency and good behavior.” A relatively new teacher without tenure, however, is under Wisconsin law entitled to nothing beyond his one-year appointment. There are no statutory or administrative standards defining eligibility for reemployment. State law thus clearly leaves the decision whether to rehire a non-tenured teacher for another year to the unfettered discretion of university officials.

         

Roth filed suit in court. He alleged that he was not rehired because of statements he made against the University’s administration and therefore it violated his right to freedom of speech. He also alleged that his right to procedural due process (Fourteenth Amendment) was violated when the University officials failed to give him reasons not to rehire him.

 

DECISION

 

The District Court granted summary judgment for Roth on the procedural issue, ordering the University officials to provide him with reasons and a hearing. The Court of Appeals, with one judge dissenting, affirmed this partial summary judgment. The only question presented to the Supreme Court at this stage of the case is whether Roth had a constitutional right to a statement of reasons and a hearing on the University’s decision not to rehire him for another year. We hold that he did not.

 

The Fourteenth Amendment does not require opportunity for a hearing prior to the non-renewal of a non-tenured state teacher’s contract, unless he can show that the non-renewal deprived him of an interest in “liberty” or that he had “property” interest in continued employment despite the lack of tenure or a formal contract. Here the non-retention of respondent, absent any charges against him or stigma or disability foreclosing other employment, is not tantamount to a deprivation of “liberty,” and the terms of respondent’s employment accorded him no “property” interest protected by procedural due process. The courts below therefore erred in granting summary judgment for the respondent on the procedural due process issue.

 

DICTA

 

“The only question presented to us at this stage in the case is whether the respondent had a constitutional right to a statement of reasons and a hearing on the University’s decision not to rehire him for another year. We hold that he did not.”

         

“Our analysis of the respondent’s constitutional rights in this case in no way indicates a view that an opportunity for a hearing or a statement of reasons for non-retention would, or would not, be appropriate or wise in public colleges and universities. For it is a written Constitution that we apply. Our role is confined to interpretation of that Constitution.”

 

“We must conclude that the summary judgment for the respondent should not have been granted, since the respondent has not shown that he was deprived of liberty or property protected by the Fourteenth Amendment. The judgment of the Court of Appeals, accordingly, is reversed and the case is remanded for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.”

 

IMPLICATIONS

 

A contract is a property only during the term. In this case, Roth did not have a property right beyond its term. Due process is required during the contract or when the contract becomes the property of the employee.

 

 

     Case Eight

 

LITIGANTS

 

United States Court of Appeals,

Fifth Circuit.

John M. DENNIS, Plaintiff-Appellee

v.

S & S CONSOLIDATED RURAL HIGH SCHOOL DISTRICT

et al., Defendants-Appellants

No. 76 – 3803

 

BACKGROUND

 

Suit was brought by the non-tenured public school teacher alleging that manner in which school decided not to renew his contract deprived him of liberty and property without due process in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment. The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas at Sherman, William Wayne Justice, J., found that allegations of a drinking problem subjected teacher to “badge of infamy” which violated his liberty interests and ordered administrative hearing, and appeal was taken.

 

In this appeal, S & S contends that the district court erred in holding that the actions of the school board violated any protected liberty interest. Significantly, S & S has not argued that either the March or the June, 1974, hearings afforded Dennis procedural due process, assuming the existence of a protected liberty interest. Neither party challenges the district court’s holding that Dennis had no property interest in continued employment with S & S.

 

FACTS

 

          Appellee John M. Dennis was hired by the Board of Trustees of the Sadler & Southmayd Consolidated Rural High School District (S&S) as a science teacher and high school principal for the 1968-1969 school year. Each year thereafter, through the 1972-1973 school year, S & S voted to renew Dennis’ contract. At the regular school board meeting in February, 1974, however, S & S voted not to renew the one year contract under which Dennis was employed. Although Dennis was given no advance notice of the Board’s February action or the reasons for it, he had previously been involved in several disputes with S & S concerning student discipline. In response to Dennis’ request, the S & S Board of Trustees met publicly in March, 1974, to discuss the non-renewal of Dennis’ contract. Prior to this meeting, Dennis was not given a list of charges against him, the reasons for his non-renewal, or the names of the persons who had made charges against him. At the meeting, the only reason for non-renewal given by the Board as a body was that the action was in “the best interest of the school.” However, individual board members cited their reasons for not renewing Dennis’ contract: “neglected his duties”; “was too inefficient to continue in his position”; had “a drinking problem.” Dennis denied all allegations and later demanded a hearing before the Board in the hopes of clearing his name.

 The Board granted Dennis a hearing, which was held in public on June 3, 1974 and at which substantially the same allegations were made against Dennis as at the March meeting.

 

DECISION

 

The Court of Appeals, Simpson, Circuit Judge, held that: (1) teacher, who had no property interest in renewal of his contract, was nevertheless entitled to Fourteenth Amendment due process when school board subjected him to badge of infamy in course of refusing to renew his contract, but (2) teacher was only entitled to opportunity to “clear his name” and was not entitled to retention on school payroll or to back pay since his right to due process did not encompass right to continued employment. Affirmed in part, reversed in part.

         

 

 

 

 

DICTA

 

The critical issue raised by this appeal is whether a non-tenured public school teacher with no property interest in the renewal of his teaching contract is entitled to Fourteenth Amendment due process when the school board subjects him to a badge of infamy in the course of refusing to renew his contract. We hold that he is.

 

IMPLICATIONS

 

 

 

     Case Nine

 

LITIGANTS

 

Supreme Court of Texas.

Gary GROUNDS, Petitioner,

v.

TOLAR INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT, Respondent

 

BACKGROUND

 

Gary Grounds, a teacher and a head football coach with a losing record was fired by the Tolar Independent School District. He brought suit against the District for breach of contract and for an alleged violation of his civil rights. After lengthy litigation, the District recognized that it mistakenly failed to give him timely notice and a hearing before he was fired. After settling the breach of contract suit, the coach decided to litigate the tort action. The trial court found “zero” damages on the tort action and rendered judgment in favor of the District. The Court of Appeals affirmed.      

 

FACTS

 

Petitioner, Gary Grounds, was a teacher and a coach for the Tolar Independent School District (the District) during the 1983-84 school year. In February of 1984, the District notified Grounds that his one-year teaching contract would not be renewed. Grounds’ requests for an explanation of the nonrenewal and for a hearing were denied. Grounds appealed to the Commissioner of Education (the Commissioner) who ordered the District to renew Grounds’ contract for the 1984-85 school year.

 

The District declined to either abide by or appeal the Commissioner’s order. Grounds then sued the District, alleging both breach of his employment contract and violation of his right to procedural due process. Grounds claimed that the due process violation arose not from the District’s failure to renew his 1983-84 contract, but solely from its refusal to provide him with its reasons for nonrenewal of his contract and a hearing. The parties eventually settled the contract claim, expressly reserving the due process claim for judicial determination, including Grounds’ request for damages and attorneys’ fees.

 

After a bench trial, the district court concluded that even if Grounds established a due process violation, he sustained no damages as a result. The trial court, accordingly, rendered judgment that Grounds take nothing. The court of appeals affirmed the trial court’s judgment but did so because it concluded that the TCNA does not create a property interest in term contract renewal. As a result, the appellate court did not reach Grounds’ complaint that the trial court’s failure to award damages and attorney’s fees was against the great weight and preponderance of the evidence.

 

DECISION

 

Public school teacher whose term contract was not renewed brought action against school district, alleging violation of due process. The 355th District Court, Hood County, Dan B. Grissom, J., held for school district, and teacher appealed. The Court of Appeals, 827 S.W. 2d 10, affirmed and writ of error was sought. The Supreme Court, Cornyn, J., held that school district’s failure to provide reasons for nonrenewal, in violation of term contract Nonrenewal Act, violated teacher’s due process rights. Reversed and remanded.

                  

DICTA

In this case we consider whether the legislature conferred upon public school teachers in Texas a constitutionally protected property interest by virtue of the Term Contract Nonrenewal Act (TCNA). For the reasons set out below, we hold that the legislature did grant teachers a property interest. We, therefore, reverse the court of appeals’ judgment and remand this case to that court for consideration of points of error relating to damages and attorney’s fees not previously addressed.

         

 

IMPLICATIONS

 

Term Contract Nonrenewal Act (TCNA) sufficiently limits school district’s discretion not to renew teacher’s contracts to create property interest in term contract renewal entitled to due process protection, and thus school district’s failure to provide reasons for nonrenewal, in violation of Act, violated teacher’s due process rights.

 

 

    Case Ten

 

LITIGANTS

 

Robert Johnson – Petitioner

v.

HOUSTON INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT – Respondent

 

BACKGROUND AND FACTS

 

Robert Johnson’s continuing contract with Houston Independent School District (HISD) was terminated during the 2000-2001 school year. The reasons for Johnson’s termination were his excessive absences, failure to provide proper lesson plans and grade books.

         

Johnson appealed to the Commissioner of Education. His arguments were that the District’s decision to terminate his contract was not valid because of the lack of substantial evidence. He also argued that the problems regarding his unacceptable lesson plans and grade books could be remediated and the District failed to adopt a standard for excessive absences, when he was referring to his absence on the first day of school without proper notice or excuse.

         

Ample time was given to the petitioner to correct and improve his grading and lesson plans. Because this time frame was given to him, there was no right to remediation, which raised the level of good cause. The Commissioner defined excessive absences as “those absences for which leave under federal and state law or district policy is not properly invoked” which was constituted as good cause for his termination.

                  

                                                 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DECISION

 

Petitioner’s appeal is denied.

                            

DICTA

          .

“Good cause exists for the termination of Petitioner’s continuing contract. Petitioner’s appeal should be denied.”

 

IMPLICATIONS

 

Dr. Kritsonis Recognized as Distinguished Alumnus

In 2004, Dr. William Allan Kritsonis was recognized as the Central Washington University Alumni Association Distinguished Alumnus for the College of Education and Professional Studies. Dr. Kritsonis was nominated by alumni, former students, friends, faculty, and staff. Final selection was made by the Alumni Association Board of Directors. Recipients are CWU graduates of 20 years or more and are recognized for achievement in their professional field and have made a positive contribution to society. For the second consecutive year, U.S. News and World Report placed Central Washington University among the top elite public institutions in the west. CWU was 12th on the list in the 2006 On-Line Education of “America’s Best Colleges.”

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Q&A: What are the federal laws and state laws in Texas on companies following their own policies?

Question by “Cheri”: What are the federal laws and state laws in Texas on companies following their own policies?
Can a company choose to IGNORE their own written policies in Texas and fire you anyway?

“Cheri”

Best answer:

Answer by WRG
If a company fails to follow it’s own policies then they are opening themselves to CIVIL lawsuits by the wronged parties. They are not violating either state or federal law unless the policy they are breaking is based on being in a protected class.

In other words you can sue them but the government isn’t going to do it for you.

Give your answer to this question below!

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