Roane man awarded nearly $200,000 in wrongful firing case

By Chris Dickerson | Oct 17, 2008

MADISON – A Roane County man was awarded nearly $200,000 after he says he was fired for trying to receive workers' compensation benefits.

On Oct. 9, a Boone County jury ruled that Nile R. Patton Jr. was wrongfully fired when Kentucky-based Raven Crest Contracting failed to reinstate him to his former position and terminated him while he was off work because of a job-related injury and receiving total temporary disability benefits.

The jury awarded Patton $147,200 in back pay and $25,000 for aggravation, inconvenience, humiliation, embarrassment and loss of dignity. Pre- and post-judgment interest should push the total to about $200,000.

In his original complaint, Patton said Raven Crest – and other defendants later removed from the case – "willfully, maliciously and unlawfully" terminated him on Nov. 6, 2006. He had been a heavy equipment operator for the company since April 2003.

Patton was represented by Mark A. Atkinson of the Charleston law firm of Atkinson & Polak and by Matthew M. Hatfield of the Madison law firm of Hatfield & Hatfield.

Boone Circuit Court case number: 07-C-154

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