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State Pays Out Nearly $4 Million After Firing at-Will Employee

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in Discrimination and Harassment,Firing,HR Management,Human Resources,Leaders & Managers,Management Training

If you've ever wondered how much it costs an employer to defend a discrimination lawsuit, a Pennsylvania case may provide the answer.

When Christine Boone, former director of the Bureau of Blindness and Visual Services at the state Department of Labor and Industry, won her ADA discrimination case in federal court, the state appealed. The jury ruled that Boone was due $3.4 million for discrimination, plus her attorneys' fees. And the state had already paid its outside attorneys more than $450,000 before it filed the appeal.

Note: Boone's attorney said the state could have avoided the entire lawsuit by not giving her client a reason for being fired, since she was an at-will employee. But because the agency fired her for alleged "mismanagement," Boone had no choice but to clear her name.  

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