In an unusual instance of punitive damages arising from an employment case, a jury awarded a nurse $120,000 in punitive damages—in addition to $20,000 in backpay and a nominal award of $1 for compensatory damages against Main Line Health—for retaliation. 

The nurse, April Nitkin, said she was fired from the hospital after she reported a doctor for making inappropriate sexual comments at work. Main Line Health said she left voluntarily to take a job at Penn Medicine. The judge overseeing the case dismissed Nitkin’s claims that she faced a hostile work environment and wrongful termination, but allowed her retaliation claims to go to a jury, alongside an instruction on punitive damages.

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