Recently, news outlets reported that the founder of Bikram yoga was ordered to pay nearly $7 million in compensatory and punitive damages for a wrongful termination and sexual harassment lawsuit.
However, just because the courts ordered him to pay $6.8 million doesn't mean that he can actually pay all that. Or, at least, he can't pay it right away. This is something to be aware of when it comes to these substantial payouts; you may not receive every dollar you have been awarded. But you are not without options when it comes to collecting as much as possible.
First, you should know that it may take some additional effort on your part to secure the money you are owed. You may have to pursue post-judgment depositions and discovery to look into the financial standing of the person from whom you are collecting money. This process will examine the debts and assets in order to confirm financial capabilities.
It may also be an option to have someone's wages garnished until the damages are paid. A court may also order that a person turn over income or assets in order to cover payments. In the case against the yoga instructor, he was ordered to give up his luxury car collection.
Unfortunately, if someone winds up filing for bankruptcy protection, you may not collect anything else if that particular debt is discharged. Whether this happens or not depends on the type of bankruptcy filed.
It should be noted that it is usually easier for companies or groups to meet a financial obligation in a civil claim. Individuals typically don't have millions of dollars or comprehensive insurance plans to cover these costs. This is something to keep in mind when it comes to determining who should be held liable for damages.
With all this in mind, we encourage readers to understand that securing maximum compensation should be a top priority in any civil claim citing employee rights violations. However, there are some realities of enormous rewards that should not be overlooked. In order to better understand what you deserve and what you may be able to collect, it would be wise to consult and experienced employment law attorney.