Behavioral health center sued by man claiming false termination

By Kyle Barnett | Jun 11, 2012

DONALDSONVILLE – The former directors of a mental health facility from East Baton Rouge Parish are suing over wrongful termination.

Stephen Richardson, Jr. and Sharon Duplechain filed suit on May 29 in the 23rd Judicial District Court against Seaside Health System, LLC, and its operators Franklin Romer, II and Franklin Daniel Roemer.

Richardson and Duplechain claim they entered into an agreement with the defendants to work for two behavioral health centers located in Gonzales and Metairie for a contracted term of five years. Richardson alleges he was to serve as regional vice president of the system at a salary of $138,000 per year plus a 10 percent bonus based on the system's profits and Duplechain alleges she was to serve as program director at a salary of $107,250 a year along with a standard employee benefits package.

Both Richardson and Duplechain assert they had ownership interests in the business. The plaintiffs allege that after seven months of employment they were both terminated without justifiable cause and in direct conflict with the contract they signed that commenced on Aug. 16, 2011 and was to go through Aug. 15, 2016.

Damages are sought in the amount the plaintiffs would have made until the end of their contracts on Aug. 16, 2016 in addition to applicable legal and attorney's fees.

Richardson and Duplechain are represented by Lake Charles-based attorney Billy E. Loftin, Jr.

The case has been assigned to Division E Alvin Turner, Jr.

Case number 103832.

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