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$23,000 Settlement in Wrongful Termination Suit Against Corizon

Corizon Health agreed to pay $22,861.12 to settle a lawsuit alleging it wrongfully terminated an employee. The complaint alleged violation of the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

Kimberly Roddenberry requested to take the remainder of the day off on February 17, 2011, after she was advised her “9-year-old son had openly discussed committing suicide.” The request was granted by her supervisor. Then, on February 22, 2011, her husband was admitted to a hospital for serious chest pains and possible cardiac arrest.

Roddenberry requested continuing leave under the FMLA from February 23, 2011, for an unknown duration to care for either her son and/or husband. She received incorrect information about the FMLA from Corizon’s local representative and was directed to its corporate office in Tennessee.

Corporate provided her documentation to submit and support her request, and it gave her 15 days to return the form. Before that time period expired, Corizon denied Roddenberry’s FMLA leave request.

She was told by one of Corizon’s agents on March 10, 2011, that she was ineligible for FMLA leave, but suggested she falsely claim she was unable to work due to mental health issues.

Roddenberry was never notified of FMLA status being granted. She contacted Corizon on May 10, 2011, which was two days before her FMLA leave was to expire, to advise she would be returning to work on May 12, 2011.

Roddenberry was informed that she no longer worked for Corizon. She subsequently saw paperwork that said she was terminated, but Corizon informed the Agency for Workplace Innovation that she quit when she sought unemployment compensation.

Represented by Tallahassee attorney Marie A. Matrix, Roddenberry filed her FMLA complaint in federal court on November 4, 2011. She subsequently was offered an unconditional reinstatement by Corizon as a paramedic on February 6, 2012.

Corizon also agreed to pay Roddenberry $6,608.34 for wage damages, $6,608.34 for emotional distress and compensatory damages, and $9,644.44 in attorney fees and costs. See: Roddenberry v. Corizon Health, Florida Second Judicial Circuit Court, Case No. 11-CA-3113

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Related legal case

Roddenberry v. Corizon Health, Florida