Supreme Court throws out wrongful termination award to trucker

04/25/2012 // West Palm Beach, Florida, US // justicenews // Justice News Flash

Texas – A truck driver awarded more than $200,000 for a wrongful termination claim was deemed ineligible to receive a substantial portion of it by the Texas Supreme Court on Friday. As reported by Statesman.com, the court ruled that trucker Louis Martinez III, who was awarded $200,000 in punitive damages for a claim stemming from his refusal to drive a truck he deemed improperly loaded and unsafe, was not eligible to receive punitive damages because malice was not proven to be a factor in his firing.

Martinez was fired by Safeshred Inc. in 2007 after refusing to drive a truck used to transport steel shelving that was not loaded or secured properly, as indicated in court records. For his wrongful termination claim, Martinez was awarded $7,569 in lost wages and $10,000 for mental anguish in addition to the $200,000 punitive damage award by a jury. The $10,000 award was tossed out by a lower court, which determined he was ineligible to receive mental anguish damages, prior to the recent Texas Supreme Court ruling.

Justice News Flash delivers the latest in Texas wrongful termination news.

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