Court: W.D. Wash.
Judge: James Robart
Date filed: May 20, 2014
Date of verdict: August 7, 2015

Total amount of judgment: $650,000

Basic facts and claims: Plaintiff is white and Bulgarian earning $12.50 per hour as a janitor/maintenance worker. The employer told him to take ESL classes; he said there was a waiting list and was fired. The employer also deducted $190 from his final paycheck alleging he had stolen a rug. Plaintiff claimed race and national origin discrimination and retaliation under Title VII, Section 1981, and the WLAD, as well as wrongful withholding of wages. The jury found for Plaintiff on all retaliation claims and on wrongful withholding.

Damages awarded:

Past Wage Loss: $100,000

Non-Economic Harm: $200,000

Other: $350,000 punitive damages (100 against individual, 250 against company)

Attorney’s fees awarded: Pending

ATTORNEYS:

Plaintiff: Elizabeth Hanley
Defendant: Michelle Peterson