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Sports Player Representative Sues for Wrongful Termination, Now Agrees to Arbitration


Joyce Li, a former player representative with Sports and Entertainment LLC filed a wrongful termination claim in Los Angeles in May 2017. There are several elements to the case that encompass common issues in the workplace. She initially sought a jury trial but in September the issue of arbitration came up. Even though this is the route for her specific situation, the Los Angeles wrongful termination lawyers representing her have taken it amongst themselves to initiate a separate, representative action against the agency for all female employees for pay discrimination. Rager & Yoon – Employment Lawyers is prepared to go as far as needed for our clients suffering wrongful termination and gender discrimination.

Factors of the Case

Li alleges that upon her hiring in 2013, she was performing similar work as male counterparts but was treated differently and not paid equally. During her role as director of operations for the basketball division of the company, she was denied from participating in fee splits and bonuses with NBA contract negotiations. Li had prior experience managing and acting as an agent for NBA players and even though she undertook agent duties at ISE but was denied the agent title. This, in turn, leads to her not attain comparable remuneration for her work even though her male counterparts were. Aside from the issue of equal pay, there is also the problem of gender discrimination. Li suffered from a dress code violation for wearing mid-thigh-length shorts when her male co-workers were not reprimanded for wearing shorts and other casual wear. Finally, in December of 2016 ISE relieved her of her duties citing she was no longer needed because she did not have any direct clients.

The sports industry has faced scrutiny with many incidents of gender and racial discrimination. Recently, a female sports anchor was suspended for two weeks for tweets she made and another woman was laughed at during a press conference by a male athlete. It seems that gender discrimination is an ongoing problem in the sports industry often ending in wrongful terminations. This case is a prime example. Many companies just like ISE have employees sign arbitration agreements upon employment as a way to have some protection in case of a lawsuit. Proposition 209 cannot apply to this case because ISE is a private company but Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 will serve as a saving grace for the gender discrimination claim.

Contact us for an Initial Consultation

The sports industry is not the only culprit in gender discrimination and wrongful termination. Other companies practice some of the same forms of discriminatory behavior. You could be suffering from gender discrimination and not even be fully aware until you find yourself being terminated. If you find yourself in a similar situation or suspect your employer is, you need to contact a wrongful termination attorney Los Angeles immediately to schedule an initial consultation. During a consultation, we will discuss the factors of your case and determine your best course of action.


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