Slurs and Racial Jokes Cause $3.3 Million Dollar Liability and More National Origin Discrimination Actions in California

A recent case showed how slurs and nasty jokes in the workplace create $3.3 million dollars in liability for a company.  In the case, two former minority employees of a road marking company, Safety Marking, Inc., alleged that the company promoted, and discriminated, based on race and did not prevent an ongoing severe ...

$66 Million Dollar Settlement in Novartis Patient Kickback Lawsuit and Additional Wrongful Termination Action against LA Times

This week, the courts disclosed yet another massive multi-million dollar settlement that will undoubtedly discourage future similar kickback schemes while encouraging other whistleblowers to come forward. A former Novartis Pharmaceuticals sales manager blew the whistle on his company’s patient referral kickback schem...

$5.8 Million Awarded in Class Action Wage and Hour Claim

Just this Tuesday, the United States Supreme Court upheld a $5.8 million award in a class action lawsuit against Tyson Foods, Tyson Foods v. Bouaphakeo. Court-watchers across the country are hailing the decision as a “setback to corporate America” (The Los Angeles Times), and a boon for employees’ seeking justi...

Protected Speech in Quicken Loans’ Workplace and the Creation of Hostile Work Environment Awards Choked Worker $7.4M

A recent case involved the termination of an employee after another employee overheard him swearing in the bathroom while discussing client matters.  Specifically, a Quicken Loans representative was speaking to another in the restroom when he was overheard by another employee who was in one of the stalls.  That emplo...

Mocking Employees Places Wal-Mart in Hot Water After Charges of Disability Discrimination

An interesting case this week charges Wal-Mart with failing to prevent a hostile work environment and disability discrimination.  The former employee was a disabled forty-seven year old with cerebral palsy who had a long and proven track record of nineteen years working at Wal-Mart.  He even had a coach who trained h...

Misclassification and Racial Discrimination Claims in Los Angeles

Ms. Jewel Gardner, a former employee of DineEquity Inc. (and formerly its predecessor, International House of Pankakes, and then IHOP), who had dedicated 22 years of work to her employer, has filed a California wage and racial bias lawsuit against the company.  As wage and misclassification lawsuits grow in number acr...

New OSHA Whistleblower Protection Rules and a $200,000 Judgment in a Retaliation Lawsuit

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) has been very busy this week issuing final rules regarding the Dodd-Frank Act’s whistleblower protections as well as handing down a judgment requiring a bank to pay over $200,000 to a terminated whistleblower. Under the Dodd-F...

Weekly Whistleblower Update: Another Health Care Company Settles for $35 Million to Settle FCA Lawsuit

21st Oncology Inc., a national health care company managing 145 cancer clinics in 16 states, entered into an agreement this week to pay $35 million dollars to settle a False Claims Act (FCA) case.  The FCA violations centered on alleged fraudulent billing of Medicare for radiation treatments.  This type of illegible ...

Two Cases that Stood Out this Week involved a Million Dollar Settlement for FMLA Violation as well as Gender and Age Discrimination Claims

The first case was brought by a former laundry room employee of Avalon Health Care, a rehabilitation and medical care company serving over forty one long term care communities in five states.   Her claims included allegations that her former employer allowed her coworkers to harass her with comments pertaining to her...