Laura Noble Elected to the Fellows of The American Bar Foundation

The American Bar Foundation certifies that Laura L. Noble has been elected to The Fellows of the American Bar Foundation. Chapel Hill, NC — The American Bar Foundation announced that Laura Noble, founder of the Noble Law Firm, has been elected to The Fellows of the American Bar Foundation. The honor is selected in recognition of exemplary dedication to the profession, commitment to the work of the American Bar Foundation, and support for the ideals and objectives of the American …
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Employment Contracts: Why You Should Actually Read Them

“Sign now, read later” is usually a bad plan with Employment Agreements as it can have particularly awful consequences. I often meet with clients shortly after they have resigned or have been terminated from their job. At the exit interview the client may have been advised by the company that all of their “restrictive covenants” remain in effect. Generally speaking, “restrictive covenants” relate to activities that the former employee is NOT allowed to do post-employment. Some examples may be to …
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Attorney Laura Noble Named Expert Attorney Workplace Investigator

Laura Noble of The Noble Law Firm in Chapel Hill has accepted membership in the Workplace Investigations Group (WIG) Directory of Expert Attorney Workplace Investigators. WIG is a nation-wide directory of attorneys providing workplace investigation services throughout the nation who have the necessary credentials, time and ability to conduct impartial and objective investigations and to testify about their investigative process and factual findings if litigation ensues. Noble holds one of two membership seats in the Federal District Court – Middle …
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Wrongful Discharge Claims Under North Carolina Law Must Plead a Specific Public Policy Basis to Avoid a Motion to Dismiss

In the recent case of Horne v. Cumberland County Hosp. Sys., 2013 N.C. App. LEXIS 720 (2013), the North Carolina Court of Appeals held that when a plaintiff alleges wrongful termination in violation of the state’s public policy, the complaint must allege “specific conduct by a defendant that violated a specific expression of North Carolina public policy.” (quoting Considine v. Compass Grp. USA, Inc., 145 N.C. App. 314, 321-22, 551 S.E.2d 179, 184 (emphasis added), aff’d per curiam, 354 N.C. 568, 557 S.E.2d 528 (2001)).  The court further explained that …
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What Does “Employment at Will” Really Mean?

In North Carolina, the employment relationship is described as “at-will.”  That means that an employer can terminate you for any reason, even an unreasonable one, as long as it’s not one forbidden by law or express agreement.   While this is a relatively simply statement to make, it is a lot less simple to understand in the real world.   We often  find ourselves explaining to frustrated employees why a terribly unfair workplace situation is not necessarily the basis of a law …
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Should I just Sign My “Standard” Separation Agreement & Get it Over With?

It is usually not with a feeling of great joy that an employee reads the separation agreement just handed over by his or her soon-to-be former boss.  And while your head may be spinning with anger and anxiety now is the time to put those thoughts aside and take a deep breath. There is a popular misconception that all of these agreements are “standard” and don’t require much review.  Not true.  There are many variations of key provisions that can have significant …
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What NOT to do if you are sued for Sexual Harassment

First and foremost, don’t make things up and don’t bribe witnesses. Case in point: A female executive of a Georgia based mortgage company sued the company for sexual harassment and assault asserting that the CEO had, among other wretched acts, groped her in front of other employees.  As part of its defense, the company provided the court with a declaration from a witness that vehemently contradicted the woman’s claims.  A VP of the company claimed that he was present when …
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Say It Isn’t Snow

Given the horrible winter we’ve been having, I’m not surprised that I’ve been asked this question more than once in recent weeks.  “My office was closed for one day due to the weather and road conditions.  Now, they are telling me that I have to burn a vacation day for my “day off”.  It was hardly a vacation and it wasn’t my choice to stay home.  Can they do this?” Before I answer the question, I’m going to make some …
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