Woman awarded 159,000 yuan in lawsuit

By Lu Chen Source:Global Times Published: 2012-11-19 23:20:06

A district court awarded a local woman 159,000 yuan ($25,493) in compensation in an appeal against her employer for wrongful termination, Shanghai Pudong New Area People's Court said Monday.

The court determined that the employer, a Singapore-based company, did not provide sufficient evidence to show that woman, surnamed Zhang, 45, broke company policy or repeatedly violated its rules, according to a press release from the court.

The case began in April 2011 after the company, which was not identified, fired Zhang from her position as director of human resources for disclosing employee salaries, which is a violation of company policy.

Believing that the company unfairly dismissed her, Zhang filed a complaint with the local labor arbitration board. The board ruled in her favor.

The company then took Zhang to court to reverse the ruling. However, the Pudong court ruled that the company violated the law when it dismissed Zhang. It ordered the company to rehire her and pay her back salary.

The company did rehire her in December 2011, but it transferred her from her position to a job in the company's factory, where she was monitored by two surveillance cameras, according to the court. If she wanted to leave her office, she had to fill out a written request to leave the premises.

It took a week before Zhang was again out of the company, which led to another round of lawsuits and labor arbitration.

Zhang's circumstances are not unheard of in labor cases, said Tang Fuqiang, a labor lawyer at the Shanghai office of the Beijing Yingke Law Firm.

"It is quite common for a company to make things hard on an employee after both of them have gone through several rounds of litigation. It is not against the law for a company to install video cameras in the office," Tang told the Global Times.

However, transferring an employee without justification and forcing he or she to quit violates the labor law, Tang said.

Neither Zhang nor her employer were satisfied with the results of the second round of arbitration, so they each appealed to Shanghai Pudong New Area People's Court.

The court supported the local arbitration board's ruling that Zhang should receive the total amount of her monthly salary from May 2011 to when the contract was supposed to expire in 2013.

"Shanghai sees more labor disputes than other parts of the country because local workers are more aware of how to protect their rights," Tang said.


Posted in: Society, Metro Shanghai

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