MY LEGAL RESEARCH PAGE
Welcome to my legal research page. Before you get
to my links you may be wondering why I have this page so
here is the answer.
For almost 16 1/2 years , having started in 78 ,
I worked for a company called ROLM. It started out in Santa Clara California as
a computer company making Mil-Spec computers and then started doing phone
systems. In 85 IBM bought part of the company and eventually all of the company
and we then became a division of IBM. Several years later Siemens Corp bought
into the company before it got full control. They now have made ROLM a division
within Siemens. I spent about the first 11 1/2 years as a trouble shooter for
ROLM helping the technicians in the field and went to sites to trouble shoot
systems and do Beta trials. Amongst several of the sites that I did over the
year was , The Wall Street Journal, the 911 systems for Baltimore and
Milwaukee, University of Virginia and Virginia Tech. The funny thing is over
the years I had two managers that had gone to Canada to avoid the draft and
never had a troubles working for them.
They closed down the local office in a
consolidation but I stayed on in the same office building while working for a
different group. I went to work for the next 5 years in the trouble center. I
was now one of the people that a customer gets when they called the 800 service
number. I spent most of the time answering calls and assisting people over the
phone. Well I was advised that after a customer tour one of the customers saw
my Vietnam Helicopter Crew Members jacket. It appears they did not like Vietnam
Vets and made a comment about it to management. I was then advised that while
it might bother me it was good for business that customers did not find out
that I was a Vietnam Veteran because it was bad for the image of the company. I
was also advised that some IBM heritage managers do not like Vietnam Veterans.
When I questioned that remark I was advised that the Vietnam Veteran is not a
protected group under the EEOC. I was advised that they could say what ever
they wanted to me and I could do nothing.
Now the trouble is I had already gone into the
Veterans Administration hospital in Salem Virginia for a 28 day in house PTSD
treatment program. Now before you make the usual judgement I am not an
alcoholic or a drug addict. I was in fact a workaholic. The treatment program
was the best thing I ever did for myself. The trouble is the company medical
department wanted a letter from the doctors saying I was safe to work with the
other people. Yes I am fine. In a survey conducted by the company after Siemens
took full control they asked if I was a Vietnam era Veteran and if I had a
disability. I answered yes to both questions. I was then asked if my Disability
is over 30% and I again responded "yes".
The questions were asked because the company is
a Federal Contractor and they have to comply with Office of Federal Contract
Compliance. Well because I was sick, from what we now know is a form of
Arthritis called FIBROMYALGIA, my doctors requested that I be allowed to work
from home because of the medications they were trying on me along with my
constant chronic fatigue attacks. At a Workmans comp hearing in Alexandria
Virginia the manager for my department said if they let me do it then every one
would want to do it so they would let no one do it. The trouble is in 1992 I
had helped test and setup the phone system for Consolidated Edison in NYC to
allow both the supervisors and workers to work from their house and also to
comply with the Americans With Disability act. WE had it working fine and could
provide a complete statistical analysis of what people were doing.
Well guess what ,even though ROLM refused to
accomidate me and I was eventually fired by them because I could not go to the
office, they sell this same ability to others.
Well I went to the EEOC and they gave me a
Rights to Sue letter so I filed the suit against the company on my own. It took
a lot of research and I am waiting to see what happens with several of the
motions that are in the Fourth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. I did much of my
research at the Fairfax County Law Library but then discovered the World Wide
Web. It has helped me do my case.
Update on Feb 11, 1998. Today I filed an appeal
in the Supreme Court of the United States. The Docket number for the case is
No. 97-7874. You can get a status by dialing the Supreme Court BBS at
The Fourth Circuit has some rulings that are in
conflict with rulings by the 5th and 7th U.S. Circuit Courts . The Fourth
Circuit says that it is your fault that the EEOC takes a long time to produce a
signed Affidavit so it moves the date forward which they claim you filed the
claim. The 5th and 7th Circuit says it is the day you actually file a claim
with the EEOC and it should not effect the "equitable tolling of time". It was
several months after I filed a claim with the EEOC before they sent me the
Affidavit to sign so I have to appeal to the Supreme Court so that they may
decide which is the "Law of the Land".
The other case involves some language that the
state of Virginia wrote into their state act "The Virginians with
Disabilities". The Fourth Circuit reads it as an employee can not use the ADA
in the state so , again the Supreme Court has to decided about the scope of
State's rights over a Federal mandate.
I also have to establish a precedent for the
benchmark used to figure out if a person or companies action has a mental
effect upon you. Right now the courts keep citing cases where they say you have
to say and do things that would offend the majority of humanity before it is
bad enough to create a mental injury. Wish me
Update as of Oct of 98. Well I fought the good
fight but the Court turned down my case so it stands as is. Since then I have
now become 100% disabled per both the Veterans Administration and the Social
Security Administration. I can at least say in my own mind that I carried my
actions as far a possible and will now move on with my life. At least I did not
just roll over and die.
Here is some of the links that I have
come up with that allows a person to research out a case.
West Publishing is the company that
publishes most of the law books that you find in the legal libraries. You can
use their search program by paying a fee or do your own research at a law
library. At the Fairfax County Law Library it cost $130.00 an hour to use the
search program or if you manually find
them you can get a nice clean print out for $8.00 a case.
The Cornell Law Library has a
great data base that allows you to research out all the historic cases of the
If you know how to use the dial up
capabilities of the Hytel Network then here is the
SITE that has
just about any library anywhere that has this ability for you to dial in.
Emory College has an excellent
facility that allows you to research by KEY WORDS cases in the different U.S.
Circuit Courts. This one is set to the
This site is referred to as the
World Wide Law Library and is
based on the University of Indiana.
This site is again Emory Law but
has the cases for the Fourth U.S.
Circuit Court of Appeals.
Here is a site that will give you other
LINKS to law services
You can even nose around
The Library of Congress
without leaving home.
The Library of Congress even has links that allow you to go
look at state and local
Here is more research information from
Indiana Law that give links to
Law and Government.
Here again via Indiana University is
More legal links around the
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