John Suayan, Galveston Bureau Oct. 11, 2012, 6:14pm

HOUSTON - A Harris County attorney has filed suit against Cameron International Corp. on allegations it fired her for taking leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act to care for her cancer-stricken mother, recent court documents say. 

In a lawsuit filed Oct. 10 in the Houston Division of the Southern District of Texas, Jenny Maldonado claims Cameron "eliminated" her position as an in-house corporate counsel and ultimately firing her in retaliation for her exercising her rights under the FMLA.

Cameron hired Maldonado to the position in question on Oct. 8, 2007.

The suit shows the plaintiff initially informed the company in writing last April 26 that her mother had cancer and was being treated at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston.

She notified the respondent that she anticipated taking intermittent leave from work to attend her mother's doctor's appointments as well as care for her.

After submitting the written notice, Maldonado proceeded to inform several key figures within the company about her plans to take leave and look after her mother as she underwent surgery and subsequent cancer treatment.

The complainant then took off to serve as her mother's primary caregiver, but in early July, Cameron posted notice of its hiring an in-house corporate counsel to perform the same job duties and responsibilities that she was then performing but under a different job title, the suit says.

It further states Cameron told Maldonado it was terminating her on grounds of "job elimination," insisting the respondent made the move "in order to deny, interfere with, coerce, intimidate, and/or discriminate against her for exercising or attempting to exercise her rights under the FMLA."

Consequently, the plaintiff sues for lost wages and benefits.

Attorney Scott Newar of Houston is representing Maldonado.

Case No. 4:12-cv-3025


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