Employer Didn't Deprive Fired Worker of Benefits

May 4, 2005 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - A Texas federal judge has turned away a worker's allegations that a telecommunications company illegally interfered with his right to benefits when it fired him for abusing the company's e-mail and internet use policies.

The court found that the employee was unable to show the company acted with a discriminatory intent when it discharged him. The judge rejected the employee’s claim that the company saved a substantial amount of money by discharging him nine months prior to the time he would have become vested in his retirement benefits, according to a BNA report.

The judge also threw out the employee’s claim that the company violated the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) when it fired him when he was 48 years old. Among other things, the court said the employee was unable to demonstrate an ADEA violation because the company hired a worker five years older than him as his replacement.

The case is Kirby v. SBC Services Inc., N.D. Texas, No. 3:03-CV-3010-L, 4/27/05.