$505,000 Discrimination Verdict

Attorneys Josh Gruenberg and Daphne Delvaux won an employment law case after a six-day jury trial before the Honorable Timothy Taylor.  Brenda Morgan, 55 worked as a flagger on construction projects in East County San Diego for $13.50 per hour.  Over the course of her year of employment, at times Ms. Morgan worked up to 13 hours without access to a restroom.  Male workers were provided a plastic bag or used available rocks or trees.  In addition, Ms. Morgan contended her employer paid its male workers more for the same work. Ironically, Defendant operated as a female-owned business. Ms. Morgan complained to her supervisors about gender discrimination.  Shortly thereafter, she was “laid off” as part of a reduction in force.   There were several defendants named as the company operated under different names at different times. Prior to trial, some of the defendants settled for $100,500.  The remaining defendant emboldened by the fact Ms. Morgan was only employed for 14 days refused to settle the wrongful termination claim.  The jury returned a verdict of $130,025 for special and general damages.  Judge Taylor awarded attorney fees in the amount of $274,514 for a total recovery of $505,039.

As a result of this case, Josh Gruenberg of Gruenberg Law was named “Outstanding Trial Lawyer” at the Consumer Attorneys of San Diego’s (CASD) annual Evening with the Trial Stars Awards Dinner recently held at the U.S. Grant Hotel.

According to CASD, a local organization of trial lawyers dedicated to preserving and protecting the legal rights of consumers, the Outstanding Trial Lawyer Awards are given to attorneys responsible for an outstanding verdict in connection with a jury trial involving a civil or criminal matter.  Criteria include ingenuity, liability aspects, service to the community and the amount of the verdict.