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Virginia Employment Law Questions & Answers
Q: Are we allowed to file and own a patent while working for a company? The patent is not related to the company field.

Our contract mentions

"conceives, creates, invents, designs, develops, contributes to or improves any works of authorship, inventions, materials, documents or other work product or other intellectual property, either alone or in conjunction with third parties, at any time during Service... Read more »

Kevin E. Flynn
Kevin E. Flynn answered on Jan 7, 2020

This question comes up all the time. You will need to take the contract and employee manuals that deal with the duty to assign inventions to an attorney in the state where you work. There are some states that have limits on the scope of this mandatory assignment clause for employees.

It...
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1 Answer | Asked in Business Law, Civil Litigation and Employment Law for Virginia on
Q: Would reporting gross incompetence of a company to news outlets outlets be covered under whistleblower
F. Paul Maloof
F. Paul Maloof answered on Dec 29, 2019

I regret that I do not handle whistleblower matters. Sorry.

1 Answer | Asked in Business Law, Contracts and Employment Law for Virginia on
Q: How Can a firm charge a client for hiring me if I am not their employee, nor have a non compete contract.

I currently obtain part time shifts through a company that declares I am not an employee, I am an independent contractor. Therefor they can not and will not verify that I work through them. One of the facilities I have been providing assistance to wanted to hire me FT. I was interested. They say... Read more »

Bruce Alexander Minnick
Bruce Alexander Minnick answered on Nov 27, 2019

If you did not sign any documents or a contract with the employment agency I would be very surprised--because all of them require people like you to do so.

Moreover, if an employment agency or company has been sending you out to work at various places then you can be sure the agency has...
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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Employment Law and Immigration Law for Virginia on
Q: an illegal immigrant who works at a store is accused of theft where paid under table. Should store owner report crime?

An illegal immigrant who works at a store is accused of theft where paid under the table. Who has more to lose if the store owner wants to report the crime because he/she employed the employee without documentation. The store owner might have video surveillance that shows the crime but can't prove... Read more »

Bryan J. Jones
Bryan J. Jones answered on Nov 15, 2019

I would say that the immigrant is more likely to be deported than the store owner get in trouble, especially if the amount stolen is $500 or more because that would be a felony.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Virginia on
Q: Our company just changed payroll companies. They just started rounding our start time to 5am even if we are there.

we get paid every 2 weeks

at the end of the 2 weeks I was shorted an hour due to this.

They paid me later for the time but then started rounding it up again even though the clock in time sheet that we can print shows the real time we clocked in we are not getting paid until 5am... Read more »

Greg Mansell
Greg Mansell answered on Nov 6, 2019

A rounding practice that, over a period of time, results in a failure to compensate employees for all hours works violates the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). This is federal law that is pursued in federal court and can be pursued by a law firm from out of state.

Q: My previous jobs payroll company released my medical status with amount my consent. The code this 24-12-21.

I have documentation of the occurrence and now I am unemployed now do to the information being released.

F. Paul Maloof
F. Paul Maloof answered on Oct 14, 2019

I do not handle employment payroll matters. Sorry.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law, Civil Litigation and Employment Discrimination for Virginia on
Q: Need to sue today.Who can help? How to do it? It's a federal matter with employment.My right to sue letter expires

My right to sue letter expires today. I want to file a sue against my employer. I'm in Sterling VA. In what court should I present the case? Where do I get the papers to fill the case? Is there someone that can help me to do so,?

F. Paul Maloof
F. Paul Maloof answered on Aug 29, 2019

I regret that I do not handle employment law matters. Sorry.

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Employment Law, Real Estate Law and Business Law for Virginia on
Q: My mother passed away willing her home to my brothers. The will was notarized, but no witness on it. Is the Will valid?
Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar answered on Aug 18, 2019

I'm very sorry for your loss. Your question was probably overlooked all this time because it wasn't in the Probate or Estate Planning categories, where an attorney knowledgeable about wills might have seen it. 'Sorry for this inconvenience, but you could repost and include those categories, or you... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Employment Law and Real Estate Law for Virginia on
Q: I've read online the fastest way to lose a lawsuit is to get caught lying in discovery! Is that accurate?
Ross Cameron Hart
Ross Cameron Hart answered on Jul 7, 2019

Nope - it's the second fastest way to lose. Lying on the witness stand in front of the judge/jury is the fastest.

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2 Answers | Asked in Employment Law, Personal Injury, Civil Litigation and Civil Rights for Virginia on
Q: If an employer garnished employees pay based on a frivolous instrument, is that employer liable?
F. Paul Maloof
F. Paul Maloof answered on Jun 10, 2019

An employer may only withhold and garnish wages based on a Court's order that is stated in a Garnishment Summons. Not sure what you mean by frivolous instrument.

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4 Answers | Asked in Employment Law, Personal Injury and Real Estate Law for Virginia on
Q: What are the potential consequences for not answering questions during the discovery process of a lawsuit?
F. Paul Maloof
F. Paul Maloof answered on May 27, 2019

It depends on the lawyer asking the discovery questions. however, one consequence could be sanctions imposed by a judge.

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1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Virginia on
Q: I was told I can't move up to management because my husband works for same company

But supervisor in another department has her daughter working for her what can I do

Daniel P Leavitt
Daniel P Leavitt answered on Oct 26, 2018

The answer may depend on what your employer's policy says about the matter, and whether or not they are consistent in applying the policy.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Virginia on
Q: Am I entitled to overtime even when I’m salaried? My company website shows that I work 40hrs a week. Which is false.

I make between 52-56 yearly. But my jobs website lists me at a hourly rate multiplied by 5 days, which I know is a lie because I work 6 days and mostly 7 days. Is something fishy here?

Daniel P Leavitt
Daniel P Leavitt answered on Oct 26, 2018

I am unclear here. If they are paying you hourly then you should get paid for however many hours you work. If you are on salary, then you get paid whatever your salary is. If you are salaried then you should be getting paid a fixed salary so your salary is not a range of 52-56. If you are hourly,... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Virginia on
Q: I have been undergoing treatment for Breast Cancer My oncologist wouldn’t let me work during chemo therapy

I’ve been on short term through work. Dr has agreed to let me work some while doing radiation Dr put restriction on me not sit or stand all day; alternate throughout the day. My employer said for me not to come back till they read policy, can they do this?

Daniel P Leavitt
Daniel P Leavitt answered on Oct 26, 2018

It is a balancing act and they need to make sure that it is safe for you to be there. If your Dr. allowed you to work then they should let you work if you are medically fit. If you are not under contract though, keep in mind that employment is "at will" and an employer can generally let you go for... Read more »

Q: I want to go back to work after this workers comp injury is healed. I hired an attorney. Was I wrong for doing that?
Daniel P Leavitt
Daniel P Leavitt answered on Oct 26, 2018

Your attorney should be able to guide you through this process and advise you. Good luck.

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1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law and Business Law for Virginia on
Q: want to know if the owner is allowed to hold on to my tips if something is not done right.

He has a “to do list” with 10-12 things he wants done, and if one is not he would take 10% each of our tips for the day (cash and extra gratuity tips). He also takes them and holds on to them till Friday and then gives them to us.

Timothy R Johnson
Timothy R Johnson answered on Apr 12, 2018

Depends on whether he's at least paying you minimum wage ($7.25). If not, then he can get in some big trouble for that scheme, and you may want to consult an employment law attorney. Employment law attorneys don't typically charge consultation fees, and in some cases, may take some cases on a... Read more »

Q: If I never had a write up and never been in trouble at work not once and how can you get fired if some one lies on you ?

A person allegedly said I said some words to him after work he didn't say we got in a fight or I threaten him they fired me because he say she say my word and his word that's it and I think they were wrong

Timothy R Johnson
Timothy R Johnson answered on Mar 28, 2018

An employer can fire you for any reason at all in Virginia unless you have a contract or the reason behind firing you was based on unlawful discrimination (race; religion; gender; age; etc.). If an employer heard about you through another employee, regardless whether it was true or not, the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law and Employment Discrimination for Virginia on
Q: I was wondering in the state of Virginia is there anything that you can do or Sue your employer if it is a Hostile Work

I am currently employed for a private company in the healthcare field it is a relatively small company however the owner of the company is not only a bad manager however I do believe some of the things that she does and says is questionable crossing the HR boundaries. For example she consistently... Read more »

Peter Whelan
Peter Whelan answered on Mar 1, 2018

If you work for a private employer in Virginia with fewer than 15 employees, then you are not protected by federal anti-discrimination statutes that might otherwise give you a remedy for a "hostile work environment."

However, it sounds like what you are experiencing is not a "hostile work...
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1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation and Employment Law for Virginia on
Q: My previous employer wants to pre depose me and the person who is sueing them to depose me. Do I have to?

I will have to take off work and told them they need to pay me. they said only for the pre deposition but they cannot pay me for the Plantiffs deposition time. I am ok to go if they pay me, they are paying my traveling expenses. But I have not worked for this company in almost a year

F. Paul Maloof
F. Paul Maloof answered on Feb 23, 2018

Virginia Supreme Court Rule 4.2 applies to your situation. It is entitle "Depositions Before Action or Pending Action.

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Employment Law and Libel & Slander for Virginia on
Q: I know Va is an at will state, but I was just fired without warning based on false information.

I know Va is an at will state, but I was just fired without warning based on false information about me provided by our executive director to our CEO. Nothing was done by either to determine the truthfulness of the information-nor was I even asked about the situation. I was just called in the phone... Read more »

F. Paul Maloof
F. Paul Maloof answered on Feb 16, 2018

You certainly can file a lawsuit but you have the burden of proof so get your evidence and witnesses together since those will be required to support your claims.

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