Photo via Wikimedia Commons.
Photo via Wikimedia Commons.

A trustee of the Norton Simon Foundation is being sued by a former driver who alleges he was fired after telling his boss that he had a stroke.

Sooren “Sam” Ohanian filed the lawsuit Wednesday in Los Angeles Superior Court against Donald E. Simon and his wife, Judy Simon, as well as the Norton Simon Foundation. The allegations include wrongful termination, retaliation, disability discrimination and wage violations.

A representative for the foundation did not immediately reply to an email for comment sent Thursday.

The suit states that Ohanian began working for Donald and Judy Simon in October 2013. He drove Donald Simon to work, doctor’s visits and social events and also transported Judy Simon wherever she needed to go, the suit states.

A year later, Donald Simon’s mental health deteriorated and he became physically and emotionally abusive to Ohanian, the suit states. Judy Simon “either ignored or tried to dismiss her husband’s behavior,” the suit alleges.

Donald Simon also “struck the plaintiff”‘ often while Ohanian was driving, prompting the installment of a plexiglass partition between Ohanian and his supervisor, who rode in the front passenger seat, the suit states. The complaint does not explain who ordered that the shield be put in place.

Ohanian suffered a stroke Jan. 16, but felt well enough to return to work a few days later, the suit states. However, one of Donald Simon’s advisers told him to take a week off and return to work Jan. 25 at his boss’ Century City office, the suit states.

But when Ohanian and his wife reported as scheduled, Donald Simon’s adviser and his son both told him he was fired without explaining why, the suit states.

Long after the termination, Donald Simon’s son went to Ohanian’s home and gave him what was purported to be his final pay check, but it was “not in the right amount,” the suit alleges.

Ohanian declined to accept the check, the suit states. He maintains he is owed more than $15,000 in unpaid wages as well as overtime exceeding $25,000.

— Wire reports 

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