Matthew D. Besser Cathleen M. Bolek Amy S. Glesius

Bolek Besser Glesius LLC

5885 Landerbrook Dr.
Cleveland, OH 44124
United States (US)
Phone: (216) 464-3004
Fax: (866) 542-0743

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High Court to address protections for corporate whistleblowers

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Last week, as the Supreme Court was closing business for the Summer, it announced it will soon hear a case that will either preserve or strip away an important protection for corporate whistleblowers. Digital Realty Trust, Inc. v. Somers appears at first blush to involve just a narrow question of statutory interpretation. But its potential implications for Ohio and the nation are actually much broader than that. [Read more…]

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Am I Protected if I Complain About Corporate Fraud Internally?

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It takes guts to speak up when your employee breaks the law. But not all whistleblower complaints are created equal. When an employee reports corporate fraud or shareholder fraud to a supervisor or someone else inside the company—as opposed to a government agency—there can be a question whether that report entitles the employee to protection from retaliation.

If you are an employee in Cleveland, Akron, or anywhere else in Ohio who reported fraud by your employer and were retaliated against as a result, the Cleveland whistleblower attorneys at Bolek Besser Glesius LLC may be able to help. [Read more…]

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Can you recover emotional distress damages under Sarbanes-Oxley?

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The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 (“SOX”) provides remedies for employees of publicly traded companies who are retaliated against by their employers for reporting suspected corporate fraud or other misconduct related to shareholders. A recent case decided by the United States Court of Appeals addressed an important question that is not completely clear from the language of the statute itself: whether SOX whistleblowers can recover emotional distress damages. Siding with the Department of Labor and two previous federal Courts of Appeal to examine the issue, the Court answered yes.

Although the case did not arise in Ohio, it has potentially significant ramifications for employees who find that they need a Cleveland corporate fraud whistleblower attorney. [Read more…]

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Court Dismisses Retaliation Case Because Complaint was too Vague

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The owner of a company tells an employee “I cannot believe you played the race card … when I found out that you played the race card, the first thing I said was for them to fire your ass….” A month later, the company fires the employee. It seems like a clear case of retaliation, right?

Apparently not, according to a decision by the Ohio Eighth District Court of Appeals in a Cleveland employment discrimination case issued today. [Read more…]

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Whistleblower Claims in Cleveland Workplaces

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What exactly does it mean for an employee to be a “whistleblower?” And when are Cleveland-area “whistleblowers” protected under federal or Ohio employment laws? [Read more…]

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Should I Blow the Whistle on my Boss in Ohio?

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I think my boss is breaking the law. What should I do? What can I do? And can I get fired for it?

Well-intentioned employees in Ohio often assume that when they blow the whistle on a coworker or boss for breaking the law that the company will thank them. Many do, but sometimes, it’s the whistleblower who gets fired. Before you blow the whistle in Ohio, you should know your rights. [Read more…]

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Case Western Retaliation Lawsuit Heats Up

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Last month we wrote about a very interesting employment retaliation lawsuit filed in Cleveland by a Case Western Reserve University law professor against the school and its Dean.  (We are not involved in the lawsuit). The lawsuit accuses Dean Larry Mitchell of sexually harassing multiple female members of the Case Western Law School community, and then illegally retaliating against the plaintiff, Professor Raymond Ku, for reporting the alleged sexual harassment. Since it was filed just late last month, two extraordinarily unusual things have happened in the lawsuit.

[Read more…]

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Case Western Law Professor Sues School for Retaliation

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This week, a Case Western Reserve University Law Professor filed an interesting retaliation lawsuit in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court against the school and its Dean. The lawsuit reminds us that employees are protected from retaliation for complaining about discrimination, even if they are just a witness to the discrimination, rather than its victim. [Read more…]

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Supreme Court Raises the Hurdle for Workplace Retaliation Victims

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Victims of workplace retaliation will have a harder time proving their Title VII cases after a Supreme Court ruling yesterday. In a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court held in University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center v. Nassar that individuals suing under Title VII’s anti-retaliation provision must satisfy a more difficult standard of proof than individuals suing under its anti-discrimination provision. The decision is sure to have a significant impact on many Title VII plaintiffs. [Read more…]

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Frequently Asked Questions about Workplace Harassment

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Q: I’m being harassed at work. Isn’t that illegal?

A: Maybe. It depends on a lot of different things. At the outset, workplace harassment is illegal only if it is because the victim is in a category protected by Ohio or federal law — race, color, sex (including pregnancy), religion, national origin, age, or disability. Harassment based on something else — like a personality conflict — is generally not actionable. Courts have said repeatedly the anti-discrimination laws are not a “general civility code.” [Read more…]

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