Store manager files FMLA lawsuit against Office Depot

Michelle Massey, East Texas Bureau Apr. 1, 2010, 11:14am

SHERMAN- The manager of an Office Depot claims she was demoted from her position after taking time off to deal with the death of her father.

Shortly after her father died, the store manager for Office Depot in Frisco requested a leave of absence under the Family Medical Leave Act to help her grieving mother deal with the death.

After she returned from her approved leave of absence, the manager claims she was informed that she was being demoted to assistant store manager due to her lack of dedication.

Believing the actions constituted unlawful interference, discrimination and retaliation, the manager, Sheri Vigoda filed suit against Office Depot of Texas LP and Office Depot Inc. on March 29 in the Sherman division of the Eastern District of Texas.

According to the lawsuit, the plaintiff states that on the day she returned from her leave, she was informed that she was demoted in title, job duties and pay. She states she was also told she would be transferred to another Office Depot store.

Vigoda alleges that her supervisor said "you are not dedicated enough to be a store manager for Office Depot because you never called me while on FMLA leave."

Since the demotion, Vigoda claims she has applied for a store manager position but was denied.

The plaintiff alleges the actions of the defendant are in retaliation for her taking a leave of absence.

Vigoda is asking the court to have her reinstated as store manager.

She is also seeking lost income and benefits, damages for diminished earning capacity, attorney's fees and court costs.

Allen attorney Dan A. Atkerson is representing the plaintiff. Jury trial requested.

U.S. District Judge Richard A. Schell is assigned to the litigation.

Case No 4:10cv00146

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