Fieldfisher has been ordered to pay damages and costs totalling €28,454 (£20,000) after a Paris employment tribunal found it had unfairly dismissed a secretary from its office in the French capital.

The decision was handed down on Monday (23 November) with a reasoned judgment expected in due course. 

The secretary had claimed that she was dismissed by Fieldfisher without prior notice or legal indemnity after asking the firm for payment for overtime. She also alleged that she suffered an assault by Paris managing partner Bruno Paccioni and was asked to leave the firm immediately.

The tribunal in the Paris suburb of Evry found that she had been unfairly dismissed and ordered the firm to pay €3,764 in salary in respect of a notice period, €13,379 of damages and €3,260 in lawyers’ fees.

The damages are substantially lower than the €120,000 originally claimed by the secretary, which included compensation for unfair dismissal, damages for the “humiliating conditions” of the dismissal and the altercation with Paccioni as well as the “hundreds” of extra hours worked as overtime.

The secretary was represented by former Clifford Chance associate Avi Bitton, who won his own case for unfair dismissal against the magic circle firm a decade ago.

Fieldfisher instructed Coblence & Associés partner Laurent Guardelli to act on its behalf. The firm declined to comment.