PHILADELPHIA – A former staff member at Molly Malloy’s restaurant in Reading Terminal Market claims she was wrongfully terminated, in response to seeking worker’s compensation claims subsequent to a workplace injury.
On May 18, Nichole Geist of Philadelphia filed suit in the Philadelphia County Court of Common Pleas versus Iovine Brothers Bar and Grill, Inc. (doing business as Molly Malloy’s), also of Philadelphia.
Geist had been a kitchen staff member at Molly Malloy’s for about six months and says she was a hard-working and dedicated employee when, in January, she sustained a work-related injury to her foot consisting of third-degree burns from chemicals used at the restaurant.
Geist avers she reported her injury to restaurant management and shortly thereafter, filed a worker’s compensation claim. Initially, Geist only missed two days of work, but as her injury symptoms continued to worsen, she missed work on three weeks of medical leave, from Jan. 13 to Feb. 3. After returning from her medical leave, Geist charges restaurant management with treating her in a rude and demeaning manner, belittling her and closely scrutinizing her work.
On Feb. 15, Geist claims she was told of her termination by restaurant ownership for providing another manager at Reading Terminal Market with a complimentary hamburger, something Geist described as a common practice of employees at Molly Malloy’s. Geist alleged she had been given managerial permission and codes in order to accommodate that same practice when necessary.
Therefore, Geist alleges the true reason for her termination was her recent filing for worker’s compensation benefits, a violation of public policy in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
The plaintiff is seeking damages including back pay, front pay, salary, pay increases, bonuses, insurance benefits, training, promotions, reinstatement and seniority, actual damages, punitive damages, costs of suit and other relief the Court deems legal, equitable and appropriate, in addition to a trial by jury in this matter.
The plaintiff is represented by Ari R. Karpf of Karpf Karpf & Cerutti, in Bensalem.
Philadelphia County Court of Common Pleas case 170502904
From the Pennsylvania Record: Reach Courts Reporter Nicholas Malfitano at firstname.lastname@example.org