Today, Attorney Murphy marks 35 pro bono service hours dedicated to indigent clients in the month of October, surpassing his goal of 25 hours. Attorney Murphy is indeed very pleased to have made a difference to several individuals by providing them either free legal advice, advocacy, or formal legal representation.
Notably, Attorney Murphy utilized a Mandarin interpreter to provide client, Ms. Monga Lee pro bono legal representation at her unemployment benefits administrative hearing. Ms. Lee previously worked for Starwood Hotels as a nail technician. Starwood terminated Ms. Lee’s employment because she complained about wages; but Starwood contended Ms. Lee committed insubordination in doing so.
Attorney Murphy argued Ms. Lee’s actions were not insubordination under the unemployment statute, and the Department of Unemployment Assistance (DUA) agreed thereby granting Ms. Lee benefits. See Lee v. Starwood Hotels and Resort, Docket #620593.
In a second unemployment benefits case, Attorney Murphy provided Mr. Prince Moraldo pro bono legal representation at his administrative hearing. Mr. Moraldo was a mail carrier for the post office until he experienced mental health issues while on the job. Thereafter, Mr. Moraldo’s doctor recommended Mr. Moraldo stay home until he was able to return to work. Mr. Moraldo never returned. Subsequently, the DUA denied his claim for unemployment benefits. Attorney Murphy then argued in front of the DUA that the unemployment statute provides benefits for medical situations like Mr. Moraldo’s, and the DUA agreed thereby granting Mr. Moraldo benefits. See Moraldo v. USPS, Docket No. 619428.
Attorney Murphy notes, these two cases demonstrate it is important for individuals experiencing employment hardships to contact an attorney for advice prior to separation of employment in order to avoid unnecessary legal hurdles.
Next month, Attorney Murphy shall be in front of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD), as well as State and Federal Court on several discrimination, housing, and contract litigation matters.