Miami Heat’s Former Attorney Sues Team for Harassment and Retaliation

An attorney who worked for the Miami Heat has sued the basketball team.  Vered Yakovee claims in a federal court lawsuit that she was harassed by her superior and then fired for taking maternity leave.

Vered Yakovee

Vered Yakovee is suing the Heat in federal court and has alleged that the Heat violated the U.S. Family and Medical Leave Act by firing her in December.  The FMLA is a United States labor law requiring covered employers to provide employees with job-protected and unpaid leave for qualified medical and family reasons.  It entitles eligible employees of covered employers to take unpaid, job-protected leave for specified family and medical reasons.

Yakovee alleges that when she returned from her leave, she was treated with hostility.  She complained to the president of the Heat’s business operations, who apparently refused to appoint an independent “neutral investigator” to review the harassment claims.

Through her lawsuit, Yakovee asks for damages and that she be allowed to return to her position with the Heat.

Yakovee began working with the Heat in 2015 as a vice president and associate general counsel.  According to Yakovee, her relationship with the team went south when she was approved to become an adoptive parent in July 2019, and she requested to take parental leave.

Yakovee alleges in her lawsuit that her superior, the Heat’s head attorney let others know that she was displeased about Yakovee’s leave as she would not be able to take a vacation. 

She alleges that she took an approved sick day to take care of her sick baby and the next day, she was fired.   

We can answer your questions related to workplace discrimination, harassment, or retaliation, whether from the employee or employer side. 

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