Josephine Ramkissoon v. Farmington Care Centre, LLC

On June 21, 2024 Hartford Jury ruled in favor of the plaintiff and awarded $257,400 in Wrongful Termination lawsuit. 

Case Background

The Wrongful termination lawsuit was filed on May 25, 2021  by Plaintiff Josephine Ramkissoon  in the Connecticut State, Circuit Court of Hartford County (Case number: HHD-CV21-6138517-S) and was presided over by the Judge Charles Reed , Matthew Gordon , Stuart Rosen and Susan Cobb.


Josephine Ramkissoon worked as a Licensed Practical Nurse at Farmington Care Center, LLC for nearly 18 years, consistently performing well in her role. During the COVID-19 pandemic, her husband, Manoo, tested positive for the virus on April 20, 2020. Ramkissoon immediately informed her employer and chose to quarantine for 14 days, despite HR representative Melissa Dziob’s request for her to report to work. Tragically, Ramkissoon’s husband died from COVID-19 complications on May 2, 2020, while she was still in quarantine.

Following this loss, Ramkissoon’s mental health declined rapidly. She contacted HR on May 4 to request time off and formally requested FMLA leave on May 14 with her daughter’s help. Initially, HR representative Marissa Grella agreed to process the application but hours later informed Ramkissoon that the company’s leadership had instructed her to deny the request.

Ramkissoon then reached out to the company’s Chief Legal Officer to explain her situation. Subsequently, Regional HR Manager Jennifer Duquee claimed that Ramkissoon had resigned, which Ramkissoon strongly denied. A meeting took place on June 9 with Ramkissoon, her union representatives, and company officials to review the events and discuss her return to work.

On July 10, Ramkissoon received a backdated letter from Grella, claiming she had resigned on May 4. This letter, actually drafted and sent in early July after the June meeting, effectively terminated Ramkissoon’s employment. The company’s actions, from denying her FMLA request to claiming she had resigned and ultimately terminating her employment, occurred during a time of significant personal loss and mental health challenges for Ramkissoon


Following her husband’s death from COVID-19, Ramkissoon’s mental health deteriorated rapidly. Her grief became so severe that it qualified as a serious medical condition under FMLA rules. The compounding stress of losing her husband, having her leave request denied, and then losing her long-time job intensified her emotional distress. Her employer’s actions prevented Ramkissoon from taking the necessary time to grieve, recover, and address her mental health needs. She couldn’t properly mourn her husband, take care of her mental health, or recover from her loss. This lack of time and support to process her grief and trauma likely led to long-lasting psychological impacts for Ramkissoon.


As a direct result of Farmington Care Center’s actions, Ramkissoon suffered significant financial and emotional damages. She sustained immediate lost wages from the time of her termination, as well as the loss of employment benefits such as health insurance, retirement contributions, and paid time off. The abrupt end to her 18-year career also deprived Ramkissoon of future earnings and career advancement opportunities in her field of nursing.

Beyond the financial impact, Ramkissoon endured substantial emotional distress. This distress stemmed from multiple factors: the trauma of losing her husband to COVID-19, the stress of being denied leave during a time of personal crisis, and the shock and anxiety of unexpected job loss. The emotional toll likely affected her overall well-being, potentially impacting her physical health and personal relationships.

Additionally, Ramkissoon incurred or will incur significant legal expenses, including attorney’s fees and court costs, in pursuing her claims against her former employer. These expenses represent a further financial burden resulting from the employer’s alleged unlawful actions.

Key Arguments and Proceedings

Legal representation

  • Plaintiff(s):Josephine Ramkissoon
    • Counsel for Plaintiff: Matthew D. Paradisi


  • Defendant(s):Farmington Car Centre, LLC
    • Counsel for Defendants: Jonathan M. Starble


Josephine Ramkissoon filed two primary claims against Farmington Care Center, LLC, both centered on violations of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). In her first claim, Ramkissoon alleged FMLA interference. She asserted that her employer failed to notify her of her FMLA eligibility when she requested qualifying leave, violating federal regulations. The company did not count her leave as FMLA leave or advise her of its status. They neglected to inform Ramkissoon about the necessary steps to secure protected leave under the FMLA. Furthermore, the employer failed to provide her with the required “Rights and Responsibilities Notice,” “Designation Notice,” and “Eligibility Notice” as mandated by FMLA regulations. Most critically, they did not restore her to her position following what should have been protected leave.

In her second claim, Ramkissoon alleged FMLA retaliation. She contended that Farmington Care Center retaliated against her for exercising, or attempting to exercise, her rights to job-protected medical leave under the FMLA. This retaliation took the form of denying her leave request, falsely claiming she had resigned, and ultimately terminating her employment. Ramkissoon argued that the employer’s stated reasons for its actions against her were false and/or pretextual, masking an unlawful discriminatory intent. Through these claims, Ramkissoon sought to hold her former employer accountable for what she perceived as serious violations of federal labor law, specifically the FMLA, which protects employees’ rights to take unpaid leave for qualified medical and family reasons without fear of losing their jobs.


The company denied most allegations including wrongful termination, focusing on their assertion that Ramkissoon voluntarily resigned on May 5, 2020. The company admitted to basic employment facts but claimed insufficient knowledge about many specific events in Ramkissoon’s complaint. They denied any FMLA violations, arguing that Ramkissoon was no longer an employee when she allegedly requested leave. The company also denied causing any damages or emotional distress. Their defense strategy aimed to portray Ramkissoon’s departure as voluntary, challenging the basis of her FMLA interference and retaliation claims.

Jury Verdict

The jury found in favor of Josephine Ramkissoon on multiple key points in her wrongful termination lawsuit against Farmington Care Center. They determined that her husband, Manoo “JJ” Ramkissoon, had a serious health condition. The jury also concluded that Mrs. Ramkissoon gave appropriate notice to Farmington Care Center about her need to be absent from work due to her husband’s condition. Furthermore, the jury found that Ramkissoon’s attempt to take leave or request for leave was a motivating factor in Farmington Care Center’s adverse employment actions against her. As a result of these findings, the jury awarded Josephine Ramkissoon $257,400 in damages for lost wages and other benefits.

 Court Documents: