On April 9, 2012, the New Jersey Appellate Division overturned a jury award of $3.6 million to a plaintiff who previously had convinced a jury that he was terminated for complaining about his reduced commissions, in violation of the Conscientious Employee Protection Act (CEPA), rather than—as the employer claimed—for his inappropriate emails. Powell v. Wachovia Corporation et. al., A-1727-10T4 (N.J. App. Div. Apr. 9, 2012). In overturning the jury award, the Appellate Division held that the plaintiff’s retention of counsel and his objection merely sought to vindicate a personal right (a contract dispute) which did not serve a public purpose necessary to state a claim under CEPA and that the plaintiff did not have a reasonable objective belief that his commission reduction was “fraudulent, deceptive, or unlawful.”

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Ogletree Deakins’ employment lawyers are experienced in all aspects of employment law, from day-to-day advice to complex employment litigation.

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