United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANT'S MOTION
TO DISMISS OR FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT (ECF No.
COHN, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
an employment case. Michael Hart (Hart) is suing his former
employer Publicis Touchpoint Solutions (Publicis) claiming
his termination was in violation of public
the Court is Publicis' motion for summary judgment and/or
motion to dismiss on the grounds that Hart has not made out a
viable claim that he was terminated in violation of public
policy. For the reasons which follow, the motion is GRANTED.
material facts as gleaned from the parties' papers
was employed by Publicis as a professional pharmaceuticals
sales representative from December 2012 through September
2016. Publicis is a pharmaceutical marketing company and
contracts with pharmaceutical companies to market their
products. Particularly, Hart was responsible for marketing
drugs produced by Pfizer and was given a territory in
Michigan. Pfizer provided him with a list of physicians
within his territory who might make use of these drugs in
their practice, and on whom he was expected to make in-person
sets requirements for sales representatives to make a
specified numbers of calls each week. Sales representatives,
including Hart, were required to record their visits in a
computer tracking program known as Veeva.
recorded in the Veeva system that he met with Dr. Daniel
Field in Dr. Field's office in Okemos, Michigan on May
31, June 27, and September 2, 2016. These dates were all
his employment with Publicis, Hart was supervised by John
Williams. At some point, Williams wanted to meet with Dr.
Field to ask him to support Medicaid approval for a certain
Pfizer drug. When Williams went to Dr. Field's office to
set up the meeting, he learned that the office is closed on
Fridays and that Dr. Field does not have any meetings on
says that Williams went to Dr. Field's office to set up a
meeting and learned that the office is closed on Fridays.
After discovering Hart's falsification, Publicis
terminated his employment, effective September 15, 2018.
record shows that Dr. Field never met with Hart. Dr. Field
stated the following in a declaration:
I do not typically come to the office or accept appointments
on Fridays except by special arrangement. I did not meet with
Michael Hart on any Friday during calendar year 2016.
(Publicis Ex. C., ¶3.). At a deposition, Dr. Field
testified that he had never met Hart until the date of the
deposition, June 28, 2019, nearly three years after
same day of his termination, Hart went to Dr. Field's
office and tried to convince the staff that he had visited
the office on Fridays. Leslie Field, the receptionist, stated
the following in a declaration:
Michael Hart entered Family Counseling and Psychiatry and
handed me a list of dates. He instructed me to tell any
person that called from his employer's office that he had
meetings with Dr. Field on those dates. When I refused to
give a false report of meetings that did not occur, he became
angry and refused to leave the premises.
(Publicis Ex. E, ¶4.). At a deposition, Leslie Field
further described Hart's conduct as follows:
I was extremely stressed at this point. I had a man demanding
that I sign something saying that he was meeting with Dr.
Field on these days and that he met with him on Fridays, and
I was saying that I could not do that, that I would not sign
anything saying that he was here, and he was, he was
desperate. I could tell. His tie was untied. He was somewhat
disheveled, and I had patients coming in, and he was
(Publicis Ex. F, Leslie Field Dep., p. 14.).
part, Hart says that the office is open on Fridays but does
not typically see patients that day and ...