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Southern Heritage <br>News and Views: Defendants move McClaren case to Federal Court

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Defendants move McClaren case to Federal Court

Case will be heard in February, 2010

MEMPHIS, TN – A local court has granted a petition by defense attorneys to move the case of McClaren v. Compass Intervention Center to Federal Court.

The suit, in which Tennessee psychologist Paul McClaren charges that he was wrongfully discharged over Confederate-themed license tags on his vehicle, was originally filed in the Circuit Court of Shelby County, Tennessee. Defendants for Compass made the request for removal on grounds that its parent company, United Health Services, Inc., was chartered in Delaware and has its headquarters in Pennsylvania. SLRC officials stated that kicking the case further up the judicial ladder had no practical purpose other than as a nuisance maneuver by the defendants.

“This is nothing but a self-serving tactic by the defense,” said SLRC Chief Trial Counsel Kirk Lyons. “It’s designed to do nothing but delay hearing the case on its merits and cause additional work and expense on our part.”

The SLRC initially considered filing a motion for remand, which if approved would have returned the case to the original court. That idea was discarded, however, when research indicated that since compass is an LLC (limited liability corporation) it can declare its “home” to be wherever the shareholders say it is; thus, the parent company can demand to be heard in federal court. Nonetheless,” said Lyons, “we are comfortable with our case’s new home and we look forward to advocating on Paul McClaren’s behalf in federal court.”

At a scheduling hearing held by phone conference on Jan. 30, the court set February 16, 2010, as the date for the case to be heard.

The Southern Legal Resource Center is a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization, and contributions to it are fully tax deductible. Credit card and PayPal donations may be made at our website by clicking on “How You Can Help.” Checks payable to the Southern Legal Resource Center should be mailed to P.O. Box 1235, Black Mountain, NC 28711. “Thumbs Up for Dixie” stickers are available for SLRC and local heritage fundraising projects. Contact us for details at, (866) 564-8747 (toll free) or (828)669-5189.


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