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Date: 03-17-2003

Case Style: Rose Marie Harshberger v. Hanger Prosthetics & Orthotics, Inc.

Case Number: Unknown

Judge: Scott Vowell

Court: Circuit Court, Jefferson County, Alabama

Plaintiff's Attorney: Richard Horsley of Goozee, King and Horsley, Birmingham, Alabama

Defendant's Attorney: Gregory F. Yaghmai and Judith E. Dolan of Clark & Scott, P.C., Birmingham, Alabama

Description: Wrongful termination claim by Rose Marie Harshberger, 76, who worked as a quality assurance worker for Hanger Prosthetics & Orthotics, Inc. before being terminated after sustaining a broken knee cap on the job. When Harshberger returned to work on March 3, 2001. The defendant claimed it had eliminated Harshberger's job in November 2000. Defendant also claimed the termination was a result of a legitimate, non-discriminatory reason, and the decision was to downsize and lay off employees for budgetary reasons.

No one ever told Harshberger until she returned to work after her injury in March 2001.

Joseph C. Elliot, a Hanger manager, claimed that he decided to eliminate Harshberger's position on January 1, 2001 but failed to tell Harshberger of his decision.

Outcome: The jury found that Hanger was guilty of deceitful or malicious conduct and awarded her $850,000 in punitive damages and $150,000 in compensatory damages.

Plaintiff's Experts: Unknown

Defendant's Experts: Unknown

Comments: Reported by K. Morlan

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