Lupin Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is the defendant in a proposed class action filed by two former employees who allege the multi-billion dollar pharma manufacturing outfit “lured them away from their (former) good jobs” only to fire them a short time later for “pretextual reasons” in favor of younger, less experienced workers. Citing the defendant’s alleged history of poaching veteran pharmaceutical reps from its competitors, the plaintiffs claim that once Lupin gets a hold of new employees—and their contacts and books of business—Lupin summarily ousts such workers in favor of younger personnel who command less money.
The plaintiffs charge that Lupin’s business model relies heavily on poaching “instant rainmakers”—experienced pharmaceutical reps with extensive contacts and experience in the industry—away from competitors. Once an instant rainmaker is on board, which the case says usually happens after Lupin offers significant incentives and “big money,” the defendant then supposedly takes over control of the individual’s book of business. The case alleges that this often coincides with Lupin jacking up the price of a particular drug despite the absences of any significant changes.
According to the lawsuit, both plaintiffs worked for Lupin from 2016 until March 24, 2017. At the end of their employment with the defendant, the suit emphasizes, the individuals were both over 40 years old. While the granular specifics of the plaintiffs’ situations differ slightly, the male named plaintiff, who left a job at which he says he had built a successful reputation for nine years before going to Lupin, describes how it all supposedly came to an end with the defendant despite his standing as an excellent, quota-meeting employee. The man claims the reasons for his dismissal were not only fabricated by Lupin, but changed as time went on:
“Not until the day he was fired from Lupin did [the plaintiff] ever hear of a complaint or criticism about the timeliness of inputting his calls into a software system (called ‘MI Touch’) that was accessed on his company iPad.
On March 24, 2017, [the plaintiff] was fired by . . . a Senior Vice-President and a superior of his. [The individual] indicated that [the plaintiff] was dismissed from Lupin for ‘low call averages.’ This reason was not true because his call averages were not low, and they were met.
Later, in the EEOC investigation, Lupin’s given reason to fire [the plaintiff] changed. The new reason given for his termination was for his ‘wanton failure to contemporaneously make a record of meetings…held with physicians… as required by the Company.’ But this reason, like their other given reason, is a fabrication, a pretext, and certainly not a legitimate reason for his termination. [The plaintiff] was set up to fail.”