Former Texans P.R. director Amy Palcic hires Houston lawyer

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In abruptly firing their P.R. director, the Texans acquired a major P.R. problem. The Texans also acquired a potential legal problem.

Via Ben Fischer of Sports Business Daily, Amy Palcic has hired Houston lawyer Joseph Ahmad.

“The only thing I can say is I’ve been retained by Amy, and other than that, at this time, I don’t really have anything to say,” Ahmad told Fischer.

That pretty much says it all. Fired employees usually hire lawyers to evaluate the facts in light of the applicable law in order to identify potential causes of action. A negotiated settlement agreement also is possible, with the threat of litigation providing leverage for it.

Palcic reportedly was told that she’s no longer “cultural fit,” which could be a pretext for one or more motivations protected by state or federal law. She also possibly has a contract that may have been breached, and she may have engaged in protected activity by for example raising concerns raised over specific employment policies, practices, or comments made in the workplace by management.

Whatever the legal theory, if Ahmad identifies one, the case ultimately could turn on whether and to what extent he can blow holes in the “cultural fit” explanation. As the argument would go, if the employer’s stated reason can be shown to be bogus or illogical, it’s possible that the stated reason was cover for a reason that violates the law.

17 responses to “Former Texans P.R. director Amy Palcic hires Houston lawyer

  1. Unless there is a collective bargaining agreement or individual employment contract covering it, you can fire a person for any reason, or for no reason. But you can’t fire a person for certain reasons. With Amy, we’ll see if that was the case. You go, girl!

  2. When the cancel culture goes the other way and bites a Biden/Harris supporter then we see outrage. But never the other way around. Ah the hypocrisy!

  3. When the cancel culture goes the other way and bites a Trump supporter then we see outrage. But never the other way around. Ah the hypocrisy!

  4. Nothing against Palcic, she has a right to consult with an attorney. If she’s high enough up the ladder (and it sounds like she was) they’ll pay her off and this will go away.

    And the Texans can then rest happy in the knowledge that they’ve put their eggs in the basket of a guy with bogus bona fides. Sorry Texan fans – you deserve better than this.

  5. November 12, 2020 at 1:53 pm
    When the cancel culture goes the other way and bites a Biden/Harris supporter then we see outrage. But never the other way around. Ah the hypocrisy

    —————

    Except by all accounts she was successfully doing her job, not ranting in someone’s face or writing something reprehensible.

    And if the choice is fact vs wilful ignorance, hypocrisy doesn’t sound so bad.

  6. I get that it’s sad that she was fired, but people in pro sports seem to get fired every day for various reasons. Not all are reasonable, but it still happens. Why is she different?

  7. The only distinctive thing about this so far is the somewhat surprisingly unprofessional public comments on it from Palcic, Watt, etc.

    PR people come and go. Publicly making the story about yourself doesn’t seem like a great way to get hired somewhere else.

  8. It is fairly simple; you can fire anyone for underperforming. What you cannot do is fire someone because of religion, sex, disability and a myriad of other protected classes. What is so hard about that? Usually if you fire someone who has a contract, you better have a good reason other than she dyed her hair.

  9. Usually senior executives in those positions have employment contracts setting for the basis for termination and severance for early termination. Regardless of the existence of a contract or not, if employees are terminated due to their sex, disability, age, race, etc, thee are independent state and federal legal claims that can be made. More important, and if the toxic culture rumors are correct, she may also have claims for harassment or hostile work environment. If so, the Texans will want to settle that matter pronto.

  10. yaddayaddawhat says:
    November 12, 2020 at 2:03 pm

    Idk, so you can’t fire an employee just because you don’t like them and you’re the owner?

    ———————-

    If you’re talking about a hardware store or a corner bar, yes you can fire someone for whatever reason you like.
    It’s a little more difficult in larger organizations and where there may be contracts involved. Not to mention certain federal protections that prevent people from getting fired on just a whim.

  11. ESPN fired both Curt Shilling for posting conservative views and Jemele Hill for her twitter rant against Trump.

    The PR director should have known better than to post political junk (liberal or conservative) when it’s specifically prohibited in her contract. Firing was 100% JUSTIFIED as outlined in her contract details.

  12. I love it when people who got their JD from an hour of Fox and Friends start giving legal opinions.
    We don’t know if she had a contract. We don’t know why she was really fired.
    Until we do, none of us know if Houston had a legal basis for firing her.
    People need to learn when to comment and when to listen.

    If someone like me, who has practiced for over 25 years, has no opinion on the matter without hearing more facts, few others should have an opinion.

  13. What are the chances this opens Pandora’s box on the Texans’ “culture” and it turns into a Washington-style detonation of the entire front office? We can only pray, Texans fans. I hope she devastates them and Cal McNair sells the team to someone who knows what they are doing.

  14. Texas is an at-will employment law state. She can be fired for no reason. She can also hire a lawyer to pursue a case that she was fired for an illegal reason.
    This organization was turned over to under-performing “football people” under the original owner, then went off the rails under his son. She may have a case. She may not.

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