Emotional Distress Damages

News & Analysis as of

California Employment Law Notes - January 2017

$90 Million Judgment Reinstated: Employers Must Relieve Employees Of All Duties During Their Rest Periods - Augustus v. ABM Sec. Servs., Inc., 2016 WL 7407328 (Cal. S. Ct. 2016) - Jennifer Augustus filed this...more

Emotional Rescue: Fifth Circuit Recognizes Mental Distress Damages in FLSA Retaliation Claim

Can a plaintiff get emotional distress damages in a wage and hour claim? In December 2016, the Fifth Circuit issued an opinion of first impression where it found that a plaintiff filing a retaliation claim as part of an...more

Fifth Circuit Protects 40-Year-Old Case and Affirms ADEA Limits On Recoverable Damages

Seyfarth Synopsis: In a somewhat rare interlocutory appeal, the Fifth Circuit reviewed and reaffirmed a 40-year old case holding that emotional distress and punitive damages are not available under the ADEA. This decision...more

Fifth Circuit Joins Growing List of Circuit Courts, Holds Employees Can Recover for Emotional Distress in FLSA Retaliation Claims

In Pineda v. JTCH Apartments, L.L.C. (No. 15-10932, December 19, 2016), the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals joined the Sixth and Seventh Circuit Courts of Appeals in holding that an employee may recover for emotional distress...more

Fifth Circuit Rules Emotional Distress Damages Available in FLSA Retaliation Cases

On December 19, 2016, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit (Court) held that “an employee may recover for emotional injury resulting from retaliation” under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) in Pineda,...more

Fifth Circuit Approves Emotional Distress Damages and Invites FLSA Retaliation Plaintiffs to Sit on Freudian Couch

Resolving a split in the lower courts and deciding an issue of first impression for the Court, the Fifth Circuit earlier this week held that prevailing plaintiffs in FLSA retaliation cases may recover emotional distress...more

Fifth Circuit Joins Sister Circuits in Holding That Employees May Recover Emotional Distress Damages in FLSA Retaliation Suits

On December 19, 2016, the Fifth Circuit joined the Sixth and Seventh Circuits in holding that “employees” under the FLSA may recover emotional distress damages in FLSA retaliation actions, finding that the district court...more

What Damages Can an Employee Recover in a Lawsuit from an Arizona Employer?

If an employee or former employee sues, they may be entitled to many different types of damages which could amount to a substantial amount. However, that is not always the case. The different kinds of damages an employee can...more

Appeals Court Explains Punitive Damages Awards For Extreme Reprehensibility Or Unusually Small, Hard-To-Detect Or Hard-To-Measure...

In Nickerson v. Stonebridge Life Ins. Co. (No. B234271A, filed 11/3/16), (“Nickerson II”) a California appeals court outlined the requirements for complying with the single-digit multiplier annunciated as a Constitutional...more

Ninth Circuit Substantially Reduces Punitive Award Against Walgreen

Things have been quiet in the world of punitive damages for the last few months, but two recent decisions substantially reducing punitive awards under the BMW/State Farm factors warrant mention. My colleague Miriam Nemetz...more

New Jersey Supreme Court “Plants the Seeds” for Increase in “Garden Variety” Emotional Distress Jury Awards

Seyfarth Synopsis: The New Jersey employers were dealt an “emotional” blow when the New Jersey Supreme Court, in Cuevas v. Wentworth Group, affirmed a trial court’s denial of an employer’s request for remittitur of the...more

Greektown Casino Sued By EEOC For Disability Discrimination

Employer Failed to Grant Leave Extension for Employee With Stress-Anxiety Disorder And Fired Him Instead, Federal Agency Charges - DETROIT - A Detroit casino operator violated federal law by denying a reasonable...more

‘Garden Variety’ Emotional Distress Damages in Employment Matters to ‘Bloom’ in New Jersey

The specific facts presented to the jury will determine whether an award of “garden variety” emotional distress damages is reasonable, the New Jersey Supreme Court has held in an employment discrimination case brought under...more

New Jersey Court Ruling Raises Price Of Employment Discrimination

Supreme Court Decision Impacts Potential Emotional Distress Damages - On September 19, 2016, the New Jersey Supreme Court upheld a jury’s award of $1.4 million in emotional distress damages to two Hispanic brothers who...more

MA Supreme Court Reinforces Employer Obligations on Sexual Harassment

The court’s decision to restore a $500,000 punitive damages award for failure to adequately address a sexual harassment complaint highlights employers’ duty to investigate every allegation and take appropriate remedial...more

MCAD Hearing Officer Awards $50,000 Plus 12% Interest For Gender Identity Harassment

A recent MCAD case illustrates the exposure companies doing business in Massachusetts face for: ..Strict liability for discriminatory and retaliatory acts committed by supervisors; ..Emotional distress damage awards...more

Common Examples of Medical Malpractice that Can Lead to Birth Injuries

Thankfully for everyone involved, modern medicine has made the process of pregnancy, labor and delivery much safer for both mother and child than it has ever been in history. Unfortunately, however, there are instances in...more

The Potentially Dangerous Intersection of Healthcare and Social Media

Lately, there have been numerous reports in the media raising patient privacy concerns due to healthcare providers’ use of social media in the workplace. A few examples include...more

Employment Law Letter - Summer 2016

Last year the General Assembly enacted legislation prohibiting all public and private sector employers from disciplining an employee for “discussing the amount of his or her wages [or] inquiring about the wages of another...more

Can I Sue My Former Spouse For Destroying My Relationship With My Children?

Sometimes in custody disputes, one parent attempts to get a leg up in the custody case by bad-mouthing the other parent to the children. Additionally, in more extreme cases, a parent in a litigation may even try to persuade a...more

Brandt Fees Increase Allowable Punitive Damages Whether Fees are Awarded by Judge or Jury

In Nickerson v. Stonebridge Life Ins. Co. (No. S213873, filed 6/9/16), the California Supreme Court ruled that in an insurance bad faith case an award of attorney’s fees under Brandt v. Superior Court (1985) 37 Cal.3d 813,...more

Bad Faith Attorneys’ Fees Are Compensatory Damages in Determining Cap On Punitive Damages

On June 9, 2016, the California Supreme Court ruled in Nickerson v. Stonebridge Life Ins. Co., __ Cal.4th ___ (2016) that the attorneys’ fees awarded to a veteran who sued for benefits under a “hospital stay” policy should be...more

Appellate Court Notes

Supreme Court Advance Release Opinions - SC19232 - Izzarelli v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. - Plaintiff obtained a judgment against a tobacco company upon a claim that it put in additives and manipulated the nicotine...more

Compensating “Disgust”: Psychoanalyzing Emotional Distress Claims Involving Food Products

You’re a sheriff’s deputy and you’re hungry. You stop at the local Burger King drive-thru and order a Whopper with cheese. You often eat five meals a day—frequently at fast food restaurants—because you work night shifts. ...more

Damages for Arizona FDCPA Violations

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”) is a federal law that sets the rules for debt collectors can do and say while trying to collect on a debt. While the FDCPA is a federal law, it protects Arizona residents from...more

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