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The Third Circuit holds that the plaintiff failed to establish a retaliation claim when his employment was terminated one month following the dismissal of his prior discrimination lawsuit.

January 1, 2011
Gladysiewski v. Allegheny Energy, 2010 U.S. App. LEXIS 19527 (3d. Cir. Sept. 20, 2010)

The plaintiff argued that his employment was terminated in retaliation for filing a prior administrative complaint and federal lawsuit against his employer, which alleged age discrimination. Specifically, the plaintiff filed his charge of discrimination and age discrimination lawsuit in 2005. On April 11, 2007, the employer's motion for summary judgment was granted, and the plaintiff's age discrimination lawsuit was dismissed. On May 15, 2007, the employee was terminated and, as a result, he filed a lawsuit alleging retaliation. In upholding the dismissal of the plaintiff's retaliation claim, the court expressly rejected the plaintiff's argument that the temporal proximity between his termination and the resolution of his first lawsuit was "unusually suggestive" and, therefore, supported a retaliation claim. Rather, the court reasoned that while there is some "proximity" between the dismissal of the lawsuit and the termination, courts typically measure temporal proximity from the date of filing rather than the date a lawsuit is resolved. Since the plaintiff's initial filing was more than two years prior to his termination, he could not demonstrate the temporal proximity required for a retaliation claim as a matter of law.

Case Law Alert - 1st Qtr 2011

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