Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Desperate Housewives Star Files Wrongful Termination Lawsuit against ABC, Show's Creator

Edie Britt is hoping mad. Enough to hire a California wrongful termination lawyer, it seems. Her alter ego, Nicolette Sheridan, the star of the popular TV show Desperate Housewives, has filed a wrongful termination and assault lawsuit against the creator and producer of the show, Marc Cherry.

In the lawsuit, Sheridan alleges that Cherry assaulted her in September 2008, when she went to ask him about a line that her character was supposed to say. Cherry apparently hit her on the face and head, and when she went off to her trailer in fury, came running back to apologize.

Sheridan reported the matter to ABC, and in retaliation, Cherry killed off Edie Britt, Sheridan’s popular character on the show. According to Sheridan’s lawyers, it is highly unusual for a popular character on a TV show to be killed midseason. That usually happens only when the actor has asked to be released from the show.

The lawsuit names both Mark Cherry and ABC, and seeks $20 million in damages. Cherry is accused of creating a hostile work environment. According to the lawsuit, he constantly behaved aggressively with cast members and writers on the set. But, Edie Britt isn't giving up without a fight.

Wrongful termination lawsuits in California can be complex to negotiate. California employment laws contain the "at will" doctrine. This means that an employer is free to terminate the services of an employee at will. However, that doesn't mean that the employer can fire people at random. There are several exceptions that protect employees from wrongful termination

An employee who wishes to sue for wrongful termination must prove that:
  • His current contract contained a clause that he would not be fired without reason
  • That he was fired for a reason that violates California's statutes and constitution
  • That the employer engaged in defamation or intentional infliction of emotional distress
You California employment lawyer must file a wrongful termination lawsuit within one year from the wrongful act.

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