Jack in the Box Inc. said it will challenge a jury verdict that earlier this week ordered the chain to pay more than $15 million in damages in an employee wrongful termination lawsuit.
The verdict was made in Los Angeles Superior Court on June 11, according to the company’s June 13 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
The restaurant employee, who was not named in the filing, was terminated in 2013. The jury awarded the employee $5.4 million in compensatory damages and $10 million in punitive damages, according to the regulatory filing.
Jack in the Box said the restaurant employee was terminated for manipulating critical performance metrics information at the restaurant where she was working.
The San Diego-based chain, whose leadership has been questioned by a group of franchisees over the past year, did not comment beyond statements released in the regulatory filing.
In the filing, the company said “punitive damages are not appropriate in a case such as this. It strongly disagrees with the verdict and the damages awarded by the jury.”
Jack in the Box said it will file post-trial motions with the trial judge. If those motions were unsuccessful, the chain said it intended to appeal.
“Pending resolution of the appeals process, the payment of any damages in this matter will be stayed; however, if necessary, the company will record a charge in its third quarter fiscal 2019 financial statements,” the company stated in its regulatory filing.
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