Worker claims termination for making injury claim

David Yates Jan. 28, 2008, 5:11am

While on the job, Max Cormier injured his back while lifting a piece of metal. After he made a workers' compensation claim, Cormier claims his employer, J & J Manufacturing Co., fired him.

Seeking compensation for his lost wages, Cormier filed suit against J & J Manufacturing in the Jefferson County District Court on Jan. 23.

According to the plaintiff's petition, Cormier worked for J & J Manufacturing as a welder "and was a good employee."

On Jan. 22, 2007, he was injured while lifting a piece of metal. Cormier reported his injury to his supervisor and was put on "light duty" with a no lifting restriction. A week later, her was removed from light duty and returned to heavier duty work (sharpening and testing drill bits).

"Plaintiff instituted or caused to be instituted a workers' compensation claim in good faith for the injury he sustained while in the course and scope employment with the Defendant," the suit said. "Defendant then unlawfully terminated the Plaintiff in retaliation filing the claim which constitutes a clear violation of V.T.C.A., Labor Code…"

The suit continues by asserting that as a result of J & J Manufacturing's "unlawful conduct," Cormier has "suffered and will continue to suffer damage in the form of lost back wages, lost future wages, compensatory damages for past and future pecuniary losses, emotional pain, suffering, inconvenience, mental anguish, loss of enjoyment of life, and other non-pecuniary losses."

"Defendant's actions were malicious and motivated by ill will, spite, evil motive and purpose to injure the Plaintiff," the suit said. "Plaintiff is thus entitled to exemplary damages."

J&J Manufacturing opened its doors in 1929 as an armature company. When a customer needed a system for wrapping and sealing rubber bales, J&J designed and manufactured the solution and the Tex-Seal Rubber Bale Wrapper took center stage as J&J's leading product.

Cormier is represented by attorney Gerald Eddins of the Eddins & Bennett Law Firm.

Judge Milton Shuffield, 136th Judicial District, has been assigned to the case.

Case No. D181-099

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