Citigroup encourages unethical and illegal behavior, including sexual abuse, by forcing former workers to waive all legal rights and prohibits ability to collect financial award through any means as a per-requisite for collecting severance payment.
From severance agreement:
Release of Claims.
(a) in exchange for the payments and beneﬁts set forth above, you, on behalf of yourself, your agents, representatives, assignees, attorneys, heirs, executors, and administrators (collectively referred to as “Releasors”), release Citigroup Technology, Inc., its predecessors, successors and assigns, and its and their current and former direct and indirect parents, afﬁliates, subsidiaries, divisions, related business entities, and any and all plan administrators, plan administration committees and plan representatives of all employee beneﬁt plans (individually and collectively, “Citi”), its and their current and former ofﬁcers, directors, shareholders, employees, agents, and representatives (individually and collectively, “Releasees”) from any and all controversies, claims, demands, promises, actions, suits, grievances, proceedings, complaints, charges, liabilities, damages, debts, allowances, bonus, stock, stock options, costs, expenses, attorneys’ fees, and remedies of any type which may be waived under applicable law (individually and collectively, “Claims”) that Releasors may have by reason of any matter, cause, act, or omission, including, without limitation, those arising out of or in connection with your employment with and separation from Citi. This release applies to Claims that Releasors know about and those Releasors may not know about arising at any time up to the date you Sign this Agreement.
(b) This release includes, but is not limited to, a release of all Claims against the Releasees under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Civil Rights Acts of 1866 and 1991, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, the Equal Pay Act of 1963, the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993, the Older Workers Beneﬁt Protection Act of 1990, the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notiﬁcation Act of 1989….
…as well as any other foreign, federal, state, or local statute, regulation, or common law regarding employment, employment discrimination, termination of employment, retaliation, equal opportunity or wage and hour. You speciﬁcally understand that you are releasing Claims based on age, race, color, sex, gender (including pregnancy), sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status, religion, national origin, citizenship, military or veteran’s status, disability, genetic characteristic, unemployment status, and all other legally protected categories.
This release also includes a release of all Claims against the Releasees for breach of contract, any tortious act or other civil wrong, attomeys’ fees, and all compensation and beneﬁt Claims including, without limitation, Claims concenn’ng salary, bonus, and any awards, grants, or purchases under any discretionary incentive and retention compensation plan or program, including without limitation CAP or DCAP, and separation pay under the Plan and any other separation pay plan maintained by Citi.
For example, someone sexually harassed by a Citigroup executive who for whatever reason wins a financial judgement can be sued by Citigroup to return that money, including legal fees and punitive damages:
you hereby waive and release your right to, and agree not to accept, any monetary or other personal recovery from Citi or any of the Releasees on account of or as a remedy for your actual or alleged injury or damages, as a result of or in connection with any Claims released herein against Citi or the Releasees in any forum, including federal, state, or local court or in arbitration, any administrative proceeding with any federal, state, or local administrative agency, or Citi’s dispute resolution procedure.
In addition, you waive and release your right to pursue any disputes against Citi and the Releasees under any applicable dispute resolution procedure including any arbitration policy arising up to the date you sign this Agreement.
Further, this Agreement does not limit or exclude the jurisdiction of any federal, state or local agency or self-regulatory organization. Accordingly, notwithstanding anything herein, this Agreement is not intended to, and shall not be construed to, prevent you from ﬁling a charge or other proceeding with, or participating in an investigation or other proceeding conducted by, any governmental agency, including without limitation the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (the “EEOC”) or applicable state or local fair employment practices (“PEP“) agency. However, as stated in Paragraph 5(6) above, you understand and agree that you shall not be entitled to seek or receive any monetary compensation from Citi or Releasees in such proceeding.
Breach of this Agreement.
(a)You agree that in the event of any misrepresentation or material breach by you of any part of this Agreement, Citi may recover any amounts paid to you herein, and seek any other remedies available to them.
(b) You further acknowledge and agree that Citi’s remedies at law for a breach or threatened breach of any of the provisions of Paragraphs 8, 9, 10, or 12 of this Agreement would be inadequate and, therefore, in addition to any remedies at law or under the terms of the applicable beneﬁt or equity plans, Citi, without posting any bond, shall be entitled to obtain equitable relief in the form of speciﬁc performance, temporary restraining order, temporary or permanent injunction, or any other equitable remedy which may then be available.
Why is the federal government, specifically the justice department and the SEC, ignoring wrongdoing at Citigroup?
Citigroup openly violated the Wall Street reform anti arbitration laws and yet no federal law enforcement or regulatory agency has taken any action. In a motion to dismiss a Sarbanes Oxley lawsuit, Citigroup used conflicting wordplay to convince a federal judge to dismiss the case in favor of arbitration even though it is illegal to do so, especially for large money center banks whose actions were the impetus for the law.
Citigroup also includes illegal language in its severance agreement prohibiting former employees from collecting whistleblower rewards. Two other companies (BlueLinx and Health Net) were fined for using the same language and forced to modify their agreement and inform all former staff, yet no action has been taken against Citigroup. When will there be equal justice?
Complaints were filed with the SEC, CFTC, Department of Justice and most of the members of the banking committees, including Senator Elizabeth Warren, Chairman Jeb Hensarling, Senator Pat Toomey, Representative Brian Fitzpatrick, Representative Keith Rothfus, Representative Maxine Waters, Senator Mike Crapo and Senator Sherrod Brown. So far, no action has been taken by congress or any enforcement agency.