On May 28, 2010, McPhaul sued his alma mater, Tuskegee University, for allegedly not releasing his transcripts in a dispute over a student loan. In court documents, McPhaul — who worked for YouthPride at the time — argues that the missing transcripts prevented him from being able to get his “dream job.” He also states that he earns $64,000 as executive director of YouthPride and discusses continuing to look for other jobs.

That case was administratively closed Feb. 29, 2012, after the parties agreed to a confidential settlement, according to a lawyer for Tuskegee.

McPhaul has also sued Atlanta-based National AIDS Education & Services for Minorities, his employer before he went to work for YouthPride. He is seeking more than $18 million, alleging a variety of employment discrimination claims.

McPhaul alleges he was illegally discriminated against after he filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission claiming NAESM discriminated against a prospective employee (not McPhaul) by stating he was “too old” for the job. McPhaul alleged the position was given instead to the 24-year-old boyfriend of a NAESM leader.

NAESM denied the charges and argued that McPhaul was told his department would face a layoff based on a loss of grant funding for the project, and that he was subsequently fired when the organization read in the press that McPhaul had accepted a job as executive director of YouthPride.

In court documents, NAESM’s attorney, Henry R. Bauer Jr., accuses McPhaul of being “a serial plaintiff and abuser of his former employers, the legal system and most anyone with whom he comes into contact” and outlines several of the other legal cases filed by McPhaul, who he said has a “penchant for suing at the drop of a hat.”

The case remains pending.

On April 29, 2010, McPhaul sued his sister’s employer, Delphi Corporation, and other entities seeking $2.5 billion in damages for himself. McPhaul sued because he said when he visited his sister in Indiana, he noticed she was depressed.

McPhaul’s sister told him she was being sexually harassed at work, so he called a “senior officer” at Delphi to discuss the problem, as well as other officials at Delphi, General Motors and United Auto Workers. McPhaul sued for breach of contract because he said that none of the individuals he spoke kept their word to him to solve the problem with his sister.

U.S. District Judge Willis B. Hunt Jr. dismissed that case in July 2010 in a strongly worded decision noting that McPhaul’s case “fails on so many levels that it is difficult to know where to begin.”

“It suffices to say that (l) a guy telling you on the phone that he is going to resolve a matter does not create a contract, (2) Plaintiff cannot claim damages for things that happened to his sister, and (3) worry or frustration caused by someone failing to follow through on a promise — even if the promise were enforceable -does not constitute a compensable injury,” Hunt ruled.

Lawsuits filed by McPhaul prior to joining YouthPride’s staff include three against former employers.

In 1994, he sued Chemical Waste Management for job discrimination based on race. The case was dismissed with prejudice.

In 2002, he sued Atlanta’s Catholic Health East and Saint Joseph’s Mercy Care, along with others, claiming that when he worked as a part-time volunteer recruiter for Saint Joseph’s Mercy Care Services, the defendants got a copy of his credit report improperly. McPhaul said in court documents that he equates pulling the Consumer Credit Report with “rape.”

He also accused the defendants of breach of contract, invasion of privacy, intentional infliction of emotional distress, libel, slander and defamation of character, seeking damages of at least $100 million. He voluntarily dismissed the case with prejudice in March 2003.

In May 2003, McPhaul sued AID Atlanta and several of its employees, seeking at least $10 million.

McPhaul sued saying he worked for AID Atlanta from April 1996 to December 2002 and was wrongfully terminated because he “made ongoing reports regarding AID Atlanta’s constant efforts to defraud funding agencies, and AID Atlanta’s deliberate and consistent efforts to place its HIV/AIDS clients in situations that did or could cause them physical and/or emotional harm.”

AID Atlanta denied McPhaul’s allegations and filed a counterclaim stating he was fired because he “breached client confidences.”

In October 2003, the two parties agreed to dismiss the case. McPhaul’s claims against AID Atlanta were dismissed with prejudice and AID Atlanta’s claims against McPhaul were dismissed without prejudice.

McPhaul vs. Chemical Waste Management

Date filed: April 6, 1994
Date closed: Feb. 11, 1995
Money sought: Not known
Outcome: Dismissed with prejudice

Summary: McPhaul sued for job discrimination based on race. Documents for this lawsuit are not online, so details were not immediately available.

McPhaul vs. Catholic Health East, et al

Date filed: Dec. 12, 2002 (Came to federal court from state court)
Date closed: March 12, 2003
Defendants: Catholic Health East, Saint Joseph’s Hospital System of Atlanta, Saint Joseph’s Mercy Care, Elaine Dawson and Larry Poore in personal and professional capacities
Money sought: At least $100 million
Outcome: McPhaul voluntarily dismissed the case with prejudice

Summary: McPhaul worked as a part-time volunteer recruiter for Saint Joseph’s Mercy Care Services, a nonprofit group that aids the homeless. He sued alleging the defendants got a copy of his credit report improperly, and also accuses them of breach of contract, invasion of privacy, intentional infliction of emotional distress, libel, slander and defamation of character. McPhaul said in court documents that he equates pulling the Consumer Credit Report with “rape.”

McPhaul was asked to drive homeless shelter residents in Mercy Care’s van. He claimed he was worried about liability in the case of an accident and that he had an oral contract that he would not have to drive. Mercy Care denied that. McPhaul claimed Mercy Care violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act and invaded his privacy when the group verified whether he had a valid driver license; Mercy Care contended he refused to confirm the license, while McPhaul said he was never asked. Mercy Care also said McPhaul signed a waiver allowing release of confidential records when he was hired.

McPhaul claimed he was a “whistleblower” who was targeted after reporting “illegal and improper behavior” of his supervisors, and claimed Mercy Care got him fired from his full-time job at AID Atlanta.

McPhaul vs. AID Atlanta

Date filed: May 29, 2003
Note: Originally filed in Fulton Superior Court on or about April 8, 2003
Date closed: Oct. 15, 2003
Defendants: AID Atlanta and several employees in professional and individual capacities
Money sought: $10 million
Outcome: The two parties agreed to dismiss the case. McPhaul’s claims against AID Atlanta were dismissed with prejudice and AID Atlanta’s claims against McPhaul were dismissed without prejudice.

Summary: McPhaul sued saying he worked for AID Atlanta from April 1996 to December 2002 and was wrongfully terminated because he “made ongoing reports regarding AID Atlanta’s constant efforts to defraud funding agencies, and AID Atlanta’s deliberate and consistent efforts to place its HIV/AIDS clients in situations that did or could cause them physical and/or emotional harm.”

He was particularly upset by not receiving the job of housing group manager, and cited a “conspiracy” to keep him from getting a management job at AID Atlanta. He also claimed AID Atlanta told people he was “too professional” as an African-American man and that he was owed $20,000 in overtime pay.  He also sued on several other grounds, including alleging he deserved whistleblower protection.

AID Atlanta denied McPhaul’s allegations and filed a counterclaim stating he was fired because he “breached client confidences.”

McPhaul vs. National AIDS Services for Minorities

Date filed: March 12, 2010
Date closed: Pending
Defendants: National AIDS Education & Services for Minorities and several employees
Money sought: $18.2 million
Outcome: Ongoing litigation

Summary: McPhaul states that he worked for NAESM from March 13, 2007, to June 8, 2009. He sued NAESM for employment discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act.

McPhaul alleges he was illegally discriminated against after he filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission claiming NAESM Executive Director discriminated against a prospective employee (not McPhaul) by stating he was “too old” for the job. McPhaul alleged the position was given instead to the 24-year-old boyfriend of then-NAESM Board President Larry Ferrell. McPhaul sought damages and attorney expenses totaling $18.2 million.

NAESM denied the charges and argued that McPhaul was told his department would face a layoff based on a loss of grant funding for the project, and that he was subsequently fired when the organization read in then-gay newspaper Southern Voice that McPhaul had accepted a job as executive director of YouthPride.

In court documents, NAESM’s attorney, Henry R. Bauer Jr., accuses McPhaul of being “a serial plaintiff and abuser of his former employers, the legal system and most anyone with whom he comes into contact” and outlines several of the other legal cases filed by McPhaul, who he said has a “penchant for suing at the drop of a hat.”

“In fact, the lawsuit itself was filed solely to force NAESM to choose between paying a lawyer to successfully defend this case or pay Mr. McPhaul some lesser amount than it will take for NAESM to get this case dismissed just to make him go away,” Bauer wrote.

On October 17, 2011, a United States magistrate judge entered a recommendation for granting summary judgment in favor of NAESM. The parties were given 14 days to file written objections. On Dec. 1, 2011, McPhaul filed an 11-page document with the court detailing his objections to the judge’s recommendation of summary judgment in favor of NAESM.

The case is now assigned to Judge Amy Totenberg.

McPhaul vs. Delphi Corporation

Date filed: April 29, 2010
Date closed: July 7, 2010
Defendants: Delphi Corporation, et al
Money sought: $2.5 billion
Outcome: Dismissed

Summary: McPhaul sued because he said when he visited his sister in Indiana, as a mental health expert he noticed she was depressed. McPhaul’s sister told him she was being sexually harassed at work, so he called a “senior officer” at Delphi to discuss the problem, as well as other officials at Delphi, General Motors and United Auto Workers. McPhaul sued seeking $2.5 billion for breach of contract because he said that none of the individuals he spoke with solved the problem with his sister.

From U.S. District Judge Willis B. Hunt Jr.’s order to dismiss: In their motions to dismiss, Defendants point out the glaringly obvious fact that Plaintiff has entirely failed to state any sort of viable claim for relief. Indeed, Plaintiff’s complaint fails on so many levels that it is difficult to know where to begin. It suffices to say that (l) a guy telling you on the phone that he is going to resolve a matter does not create a contract, (2) Plaintiff cannot claim damages for things that happened to his sister, and (3) worry or frustration caused by someone failing to follow through on a promise -even if the promise were enforceable -does not constitute a compensable injury.

McPhaul vs. Tuskegee University

Date filed: May 28, 2010
This case was originally filed April 29, 2010, in Fulton County Superior Court.
Date closed: Feb. 29, 2012*
Defendants: Tuskegee University, several employees, and collection firm Williams & Fudge.
Money sought: $8 million plus attorney’s fees
Outcome: The parties have agreed to a confidential settlement. The case is considered administratively closed after the parties participated in a settlement conference with Magistrate Judge Gerrilyn G. Brill on Jan. 27, 2012. Parties must file a stipulation of dismissal by April 15, 2012. If settlement is not consummated by that time, the parties may move to reopen it.

Summary: McPhaul sued saying he asked for a college transcript because he was “applying for an academic employment position with a State of California college.” He stated in court documents that it was a “dream job” as a “psychiatric services educator.”

Later court documents show the job was as a Psychiatric Technology Instructor at North Orange County Community College District.

McPhaul sued because Tuskegee allegedly would not release the transcript because the school said he owed $1,000 on a loan. He contends he paid the loan off in January 1991, and then again in 1994 when he was told it had to be paid to get another transcript he needed.

McPhaul contended a collection agent, Williams & Fudge, contacted him in 2005 to collect the money and then told him it was marked in their records as “paid.” He says staff at the college were “rude” to him and refused to let him speak directly to the university president.

In compensation, McPhaul asked for a variety of damages for breach of contract, punitive damages, lost future wages and infliction of emotional distress, totaling $8 million, plus attorney’s fees.

In October 2010, the court dismissed the collection agent from the case, but declined to dismiss the case against Tuskegee. The judge stated he was not ruling that McPhaul’s claim was true, but that case law in other such cases showed the lawsuit can proceed in order to determine it.

In March 2011, Tuskegee filed a motion to dismiss based on numerous claims, including that McPhaul had not participated in discovery as scheduled, had not provided any documents to show he either had or paid the loan, had filed for bankruptcy despite stating in depositions that he had not been significantly late on any loans, and that he was clearly not qualified for the job he alleged he lost out on, for multiple reasons including that he did not hold the California licenses required as minimum qualifications to apply.

In court documents, McPhaul disputed all of those claims.

Top photo: YouthPride Executive Director Terence McPhaul (by Dyana Bagby)

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