Austintown man sues claiming direct deposit violates religion
An Austintown Township man has filed a federal complaint against FirstEnergy alleging that he was fired over religious objections to direct deposit of his paycheck into a bank account.
The civil complaint filed in U.S. District Court by Lee Yeager claims that FirstEnergy fired him in 2005.
Yeager, who according to the suit is a Christian Fundamentalist, says that he held a sincere religious belief that conflicted with FirstEnergy's direct deposit employment requirement.
The lawsuit does not cite any specific biblical references that are behind the objection.
Yeager says he informed the company about the conflict and believes that FirstEnergy could have accommodated his belief without “undue hardship in the conduct of business.”
After Yeager was fired, he filed charges with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the Ohio Civil Rights Commission alleging discrimination on the basis of religion.
On February 17 the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission issued a letter closing its file on the case, paving the way for the federal lawsuit.
The suit asks the court to reinstate Yeager to his job and award him back pay.
FirstEnergy has not yet filed a response to the suit.