Business NC Magazine Has Recognized Laura Noble of The Noble Law Firm Among the State’s Legal Elite Three Years Running from 2014-2016

Since 2002, Business North Carolina magazine has honored Tar Heel lawyers by publishing Business North Carolina’s Legal Elite, a listing of the state’s top lawyers in business-related categories. Winners are chosen not by BNC editors but by the state’s lawyers. Business North Carolina’s Legal Elite has become the model for other awards and lists, but it remains unique as the only award that gives every active lawyer in the state the opportunity to participate. Business North Carolina’s Legal Elite includes …
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Don’t be a #Twit(ter) at Work

Ever gotten bored during the workday and picked up your smartphone to play around on Twitter?  Ever tempted to complain about your company or your boss? Beware.  It could cost you your job. Social media is as much a part of our social fabric now as interpersonal communication.  And people are using it while at work and to talk about work.  Ask yourself… if you walked out to the sidewalk in front of your company and announced to everyone how …
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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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The Way You Dress at Work

Generally, your employer may maintain a dress code that applies to all employees within a certain job category, even if it means that, coincidentally, the dress code happens to conflict with some workers’ ethnic or religious beliefs.  However, your employer’s policy can’t single out groups of people based upon factors such as national origin or religion.  For example, the company can’t ban employees from wearing traditional African head wraps while allowing other employees to don western-styled hats (cowboy hats, fedoras, …
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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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Financial Executives Group Invites Laura Noble to Speak on The Top Ten Employment Laws Executives Need to Know

Laura Noble of The Noble Law Firm in Chapel Hill has been selected by The Financial Executives Networking Group (FENG) Raleigh, NC Chapter to speak to members on the Top Ten Employment Laws Executives Need to Know on October 9, 2013. The group selected Noble due to her niche practice focused exclusively on employment law. The presentation will inform participants about the latest employment law developments, provide an introduction to a number of employment laws and explore new ideas on …
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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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