Legal Market Garden

Posted in Dumb Ideas Girls Have on January 28th, 2010 by bl1y

Looks like it’s time for yet another associate to sue their firm for discrimination.  This time Kamisha Menns, a black Jamaican woman, is suing after being fired from Howrey.  From her complaint, here’s the basic plot:

Menns was working in DC at Freshfields, completely happy and satisfied with her job.  Her complaint actually says she was happy and not looking to change firms.

Menns met a partner from Howrey while at an anti-trust conference who began recruiting her to work at Howrey.  She put in an application to work at Howrey’s Belgium office, was flown in for interviews with twelve different attorneys there.

Howrey then offered Menns a job in Belgium, along with a higher salary, moving expenses, and 10,000 Euro (~14,000 USD) signing bonus.

A bunch of shit that’s in dispute happened, Menns filed a complaint with Howrey’s main office, and then Howrey was fired, a mere 5 months after she was hired.

Menn’s argument is basically that she kept getting work away despite getting good reviews, and the firing was in retaliation for complaining about possible discrimination.  Unfortunately for her, her own account her hiring are pretty strong evidence that there wasn’t any prejudice against her.  You don’t go to that sort of effort to recruit a black women if you’re a bigot.

My guess about what happened is she interviewed really well but turned out to be a substandard lawyer.  The positive reviews were likely the result of people simply being polite and not wanting to insult her.  Attorneys don’t get bad reviews until a firm has decided to build a case for their dismissal.  Otherwise, lawyers being completely spineless wimps, everyone gets a good review.

And if I’m wrong, and she really was discriminated against, just think about what exactly that would mean.  Howrey actively recruited her when she wasn’t looking for a new job.  Did they really go to great lengths hire her for the sole purpose of just firing her a few months later and leaving her stranded in a foreign country with poor job prospects?  If so, is that the type of firm you want to get into a legal battle with?  This isn’t Jim v. Dwight level office pranks.  If Menns’s accusations are true, she should get the hell away from there, quick.

PS: Menns is suing for $30 million dollars.  What a fucking joke.

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