Turner v. City of Wilmington, Del. Supr., No. 480, 2006, Ridgley, J. (Mar. 12, 2007)
In Turner, the plantiff employee filed a civil action against the City of Wilmington claiming liquidated damages, attorney fees and costs under the Wage Payment and Collection Act on the basis of the City's delay in payment of worker's compensation benefits. While the City of Wilmington had paid medical benefits, Turner brought the action on the basis that the City of Wilmington was subject to liquidated damages, fees and costs under the Supreme Court decision in Huffman v. C.C. Oliphant & Sons, Inc., 432 A.2d 1207 (Del.1981). In Huffman, the Court granted recovery of damages for wrongfully withheld benefits, pursuyant to the Wage Payment and Collection Act. However, the Court in Turner rejected plaintiff's claim because the State of Delaware and its political subdivisions enjoy statutory immunity from WPCA remedies. The Court reasoned that the General Assembly has decided as a matter of public policy that political subdivisions should be exempt from claims under the WPCA.