Plaintiff Cites Family Medical Leave Act Violations in Wrongful Termination Lawsuit

A lawsuit was filed by Milagros Del Valle on Friday in the Southern District of Florida, Miami Division, against her former employer, Gastro Health, LLC. Del Valle alleged that the defendant violated the Family Medical Leave Act, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act and the Florida Civil Rights Act. 

She claimed that her employer interfered with her right to take and manage her own FMLA leave and her right to reinstatement, failed to provide her with notice of her FMLA rights, and discriminated and retaliated against her through termination upon her contacting human resources and requesting FMLA paperwork.

According to the complaint, Del Valle was hired by Gastro as an Imaging and Infusion Manager employee in March 2018. She maintained that she worked in her position “without incident” until she was fired in August of 2019. Del Valle experienced a medical occurrence in October 2018 that called for immediate and emergency medical treatment. 

After informing her supervisor of the event, she was granted permission to work from home while remaining under doctor’s care and being treated for the medical condition and accompanying disabilities. Eventually, however, her doctor insisted that she “take a medical leave to alleviate her stress while undergoing treatments.”

The plaintiff expressed and disclosed her need to take advantage of medical benefits her employer offered due to her disabilities. She asked her supervisor for one week off of work using her allotted paid time off and explained that the leave was in direct relation to her serious medical condition and disabilities. Before the leave took place, she reminded her supervisor and asked human resources for FMLA paperwork. One business day after she inquired about FMLA paperwork, her supervisor terminated her employment, claiming that “they didn’t feel she was happy at work.”

The document filed by Del Valle included counts of interference with FMLA rights, FMLA retaliation, unlawful discrimination based on handicap in violation of the Florida Civil Rights Act, failure to accommodate in violation of the Florida Civil Rights Act, unlawful retaliation in violation of the Florida Civil Rights Act and violation of Section 510 of the ERISA. Del Valle is demanding a trial by jury, favorable judgement, equitable and legal relief, and attorney’s fees.

The plaintiff is represented by Morgan & Morgan.