Woman files FMLA lawsuit against Odyssey House

Michelle Massey Apr. 7, 2010, 4:55am

Hospitalized for more than a week due to pneumonia, an employee of the Odyssey House believes she was wrongfully terminated and that her termination violated the Family Medical Leave Act.

Anusica B. Brown filed suit against Odyssey House Louisiana, Inc. and XYZ Insurance Co. on Feb. 19 in the Civil District Court for the Parish of Orleans. Defendants removed the case to the New Orleans federal court on April 6.

Brown states that during her scheduled time off, she developed the symptoms of a cold and could not return to work as scheduled. She called her supervisor regarding her inability to work and remained in contact with the supervisor until Brown was diagnosed with pneumonia and hospitalized. The plaintiff states that she remained in the hospital and under doctor's care for eight days but still managed to contact her employer regarding her illness.

The day after the plaintiff was discharged from the hospital, she learned that her medical insurance coverage had been terminated.

When she contacted her employer, she learned that she had been terminated, the complaint states. That same day, the plaintiff received a notice stating that she voluntarily terminated her employment due to the number of days absent from work.

Brown states that her termination after fully advising her supervisor and employer of her serious medical condition violates her protected rights under the Family Medical Leave Act.

The plaintiff is asking the court to award lost wages and benefits, liquidated damages, interest, attorney's fees and court costs.

U.S. District Judge Ivan L.R. Lemelle is assigned to the case.

Case No 2:10cv01037

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