Former Chipotle Manager Awarded $8 Million for Wrongful Termination


The former manager of a Chipotle Mexican Grill in Fresno, who was accused of stealing over $600 dollars, was awarded nearly $8 million dollars by a California jury for wrongful termination. In 2015, Jeanette Ortiz, a manager at the restaurant, was accused of theft by her bosses. They claimed they had her on tape stealing the money, but when Ortiz asked to see the evidence, she was told it had been destroyed.

Ortiz filed a wrongful termination suit and a couple of weeks ago jurors ordered Chipotle to pay her $7.97 million in damages after four hours of deliberation. The panel ruled Ortiz was a victim of a scheme to defame her for filing a worker’s compensation claim for a job-related wrist injury caused by carpal tunnel syndrome.

Employee Rights

If you own a business in California, your workers have the right to work in an environment free of discrimination. Several laws say that employers cannot base any hiring, firing, promotion or demotion decisions based on certain elements, such as race, religion, disability status, medical condition, and retaliation.

As an employer, you must make sure that you are not violating any basic employee rights when you make the decision to terminate a worker. Illegally firing an employee can result in a long legal battle that can harm both your brand and your wallet. If you need an attorney to review your termination policies, or if you have any other questions, our San Diego wrongful termination lawyers can help you.

At Purdy & Bailey, LLP, our team has experience with complex documents, litigating in court, or settling outside of the judicial system. We are ready to fight on your behalf, regardless of the size of your company.

If you want to talk, please call (858) 360-7080 or contact us online.