The Sixth Circuit Court recently affirmed a jury verdict in favor of an employee in a major Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) interference claim. According to the decision, FedEx was liable for failing to provide the claimant employee with proper written notice of all of the consequences of not returning a completed medical certification form.
In addition, the appeals court found that the magistrate re-weighed evidence without permission when she reduced the jury award of $173,000 to $90,788, then reinstated the full amount of the award to the claimant.
A failure to properly inform
The employee in question had worked for FedEx for many years in a variety of positions. As of the summer of 2007, she was a senior paralegal for the company. She reportedly suffered from a numerous health problems that made it necessary for her to take FMLA leave. FedEx offered the leave and verbally asked her to complete a medical certification form, yet never explained the consequences of not doing so. When she failed to provide FedEx with the medical certification form and missed two days after the form was due, the company terminated her employment.
The Sixth Circuit reversed the magistrate’s original decrease of the damages because of a procedural error and the magistrate’s abuse of discretion in re-weighing evidence.
This is another example of an employee standing up for her rights after believing she was the victim of wrongful termination. If you believe that you were unfairly treated or wrongfully fired from your position, contact a knowledgeable Dallas attorney with Whistleblower Law for Managers today.