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(Janka Dharmasena)

Personal injury firm Messa & Associates denied on Friday wage-and-hour claims levied by a former paralegal, instead saying she was fired because she posted negative things about the firm in public forums.

In its answer March 4 to Lauren Vollmer’s proposed class and collective action on behalf of paralegals and legal secretaries, Messa & Associates denied Vollmer’s claims that she was wrongfully terminated because of her Facebook complaints regarding Messa & Associates’ alleged illegal compensation and overtime practices.

“To the contrary, [Vollmer's] employment with [Messa & Associates] was terminated due to her misconduct, which included her utilization of social media during work hours, her posting of derogatory and negative remarks about her workplace and co-workers in a public forum, and her communications of confidential information to former employees,” Messa & Associates said in its answer, filed by its attorney Arthur W. “Terry” Lefco and others at Marshall Dennehey Warner Coleman & Goggin.

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