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Aljaberi v. Neurocare Center, Inc.

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Fifth District, Stark

May 7, 2018

MOHAMMED M. ALJABERI, M.D. Plaintiff-Appellee
v.
NEUROCARE CENTER, INC., et al. Defendants-Appellants

          Civil Appeal from the Court of Common Pleas, Caes No. 2016 CV 02671

          For Plaintiff-Appellee LEE E. PLAKAS GARY A. CORROTO MARIA C. KLUTINOTY EDWARDS TZANGAS PLAKAS MANNOS LTD

          For Defendants-Appellants MARTIN T. GALVIN JONATHAN H. KROL REMINGER CO., LPA ALLEN SCHULMAN STACIE ROTH

          Hon. John W. Wise, P. J., Hon. W. Scott Gwin, J., Hon. Craig R. Baldwin, J.

          OPINION

          WISE, P.J.

         {¶1} Appellants Neurocare Center, Inc., Ryan S. Drake, D.O., and Andrew P. Stalker, M.D. appeal the September 18, 2017, decision of the Stark County Court of Common Pleas ordering production of certain documents sent to the State Medical Board of Ohio.

         {¶2} Appellee is Mohammed M. Aljaberi, M.D.

         STATEMENT OF THE FACTS

         {¶3} In 2002, Appellee Mohammed Aljaberi, M.D. became employed as a senior physician at Appellant Neurocare. For more than a decade, in addition to being a physician employee, he has been a shareholder and a director of the company. As of September 2016, Neurocare was a close corporation with eight physician shareholders.

         {¶4} On September 7, 2016, Dr. Aljaberi was locked out of his computer, and Appellees Dr. Stalker and Dr. Drake informed Dr. Aljaberi that he should take a few days off due to an incident involving colleagues. As per Dr. Stalker and Dr. Drake's instruction, Dr. Aljaberi took the days off as they requested.

         {¶5} On or about September 12, 2016, the members of the Neurocare Board of Directors, held a meeting wherein Neurocare's doctors voted to remove Dr. Aljaberi as a director and to terminate his employment as a senior physician with Neurocare. Appellants cited repeated misconduct, including physically assaulting a staff member, insulting/offending patients, and exposing staff members, including schedulers and a medical student, to pornography on his work computer as the basis for the termination of Dr. Aljaberi. At his deposition, Appellee admitted to all of this misconduct. He claimed that he deserved to be disciplined, but not terminated.

         {¶6} On December 8, 2016, Appellee filed a Complaint against Appellants Neurocare Center, Inc., Ryan S. Drake, D.O. and Andrew P. Stalker, M.D., which included claims for Breach of Fiduciary Duty, Breach of Contract, Civil Conspiracy, and Declaratory Judgment.

         {¶7} On December 9, 2016, Appellants filed a complaint with the State Medical Board of Ohio concerning Dr. Aljaberi.

         {¶8} On May 4, 2017, Dr. Aljaberi amended his Complaint, asserting claims of Breach of Fiduciary Duty, Breach of Contract, Civil Conspiracy, Conversion, Declaratory Judgment, Production of Corporate Books and Records, ...


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