Former employees of La-Z-Boy, the Minneapolis-based furniture manufacturer, have filed a wrongful termination lawsuit against the company, alleging that they were fired shortly after being injured on the job. One plaintiff, Tom Ammons, who had worked for La-Z-Boy for 21 years, said he was fired on the same day that he was scheduled to fill out workers’ compensation forms for injuries caused by lifting and flipping heavy furniture over and over. Another plaintiff, A. Cameron Sycamore, was fired after undergoing four operations to relieve pain in his wrists. The plaintiffs are seeking class-action status for their lawsuit, which would allow other former La-Z-Boy employees to join in the claim. The lawsuit alleges that the furniture manufacturer mishandled workers’ compensation claims, often firing injured workers as a way of avoiding paying them medical benefits and lost wages.
On Tuesday, lawyers for a group of former La-Z-Boy employees filed a motion seeking to have their wrongful-termination suit declared a class action. That designation would allow … others to join as plaintiffs. Nearly 30 ex-workers already have filed affidavits alleging they were unfairly discharged after suffering on-the-job injuries and asking to be part of the suit. The legal action claims La-Z-Boy harassed workers who were injured on the job, then either fired them or put them in a position that forced them to quit. Kathy Liebmann, a La-Z-Boy spokeswoman, said the company does not comment on pending litigation. La-Z-Boy has denied the allegations in court filings.