A California jury on Tuesday ordered Ivy Hill Corp., a company that packages products for the entertainment industry, to pay $1.27 million to a former employee who claims she was harassed because of her age.
The jury in the Superior Court of the State of California, County of Los Angeles, found in favor of Judee Welch, who worked for Ivy Hill in Los Angeles for 22 years, said her attorneys from Shegerian & Associates Inc.
Welch was terminated in March 2009 in what the company described as a layoff, the firm said.
In her suit, filed two months after her termination, she alleged age discrimination, age harassment and breach of implied employment contract not to terminate without good cause.
The jury found in her favor on the harassment and breach of contract claims, according to the firm.
Welch began working at Ivy Hill as a salesperson in 1987. She testified at trial that company executives harassed her about her age, making numerous derogatory comments to her, questioning her work abilities and writing her up for false issues, the firm said.
The company also took a financially lucrative account away from her and tried to hire only younger employees, Welch claimed. Eventually, the company fabricated a reason to fire her, she alleged.
Ivy Hill was acquired by Multi Packaging Solutions Inc. in 2009. In a statement, Multi Packaging distanced itself from the verdict.
“It is important to note, MPS was completely exonerated in this case and the verdict was rendered against others named in the lawsuit,” the company said. “The actions bringing on the lawsuit occurred prior to MPS acquiring Ivy Hill and the individuals involved are not associated with MPS.”
According to the company’s website, New York-based Ivy Hill was founded in 1914 and was the first company in the U.S. to print record jackets. Today, it makes packages for CDs, DVDs and other entertainment products.
Shegerian & Associates is representing the plaintiff.
Case information and counsel for Ivy Hill was not immediately available.