BLUEFIELD – AT&T Mobility says its former employee did not exhaust all administrative remedies available to her before she filed suit against the company for its alleged failure to compensate her for her work.
Summer Bishop originally filed a lawsuit against the company Aug. 24 in Mercer Circuit Court, alleging she was not paid more than $30,000 due to her.
Bishop claims she began working as a general business specialist for AT&T when it purchased her former employer, Dobson Communications Corp.
On Oct. 31, 2008, Bishop provided AT&T with her two-week resignation notice because of the company's failure to pay her wages she earned, according to the complaint.
"The Defendant was well aware that it owed wages to Summer Bishop at the time her employment terminated," the suit states. "Despite a written request that Defendant pay her the wages owed, Defendant has failed and refused to pay those wages."
Each month Bishop worked for AT&T, she earned $1,500. As AT&T failed to pay Bishop for six months of work, the company owes her $9,000, the complaint says.
In addition, Bishop claims she expected to receive $10 for every line migration she accomplished and an additional $6 for each new activation. As Bishop achieved a total of 622 line migrations and 3,200 new activations, AT&T owes her $25,420, according to the complaint.
"The total amount of compensation owed to the Plaintiff by AT&T at the time her employment terminated was $34,420," the suit states.
In addition to the money she claims AT&T owes her, Bishop seeks liquidated damages of $103,260, plus pre-judgment interest, attorney's fees, costs and other relief the court deems just.
But AT&T claims the court should take no heed to Bishop's complaint and denies Bishop's allegations.
In addition, because Bishop failed to mitigate the complaint within her company and because the lawsuit may be barred by an expired statute of limitations, AT&T says it should be awarded damages instead of Bishop.
AT&T removed the case to federal court, saying Bishop's request of more than $75,000 reaches the threshold for a federal case. In addition, Bishop, a West Virginia resident, and AT&T, a Delaware corporation with a principal place of business in Atlanta, reside in different states, according to the complaint.
Kathryn Reed Bayless of Bayless Law Firm in Princeton will be representing Bishop.
Jeffrey M. Wakefield and Elizabeth L. Taylor of Flaherty, Sensabaugh and Bonasso in Charleston will be representing AT&T.
U.S. District Court case number: 1:09-cv-1066