A former McDonald's employee claims she lost her disability benefits, which included a monthly income of more than $1,500, when the restaurant's general manager stole her information to write numerous payroll checks, then cashed them in.

Lora Benson filed suit Aug. 22 in Madison County Circuit Court against Theresa Bryan, G.M.J. Inc. and CNB Bank & Trust.

According to the complaint, Benson formerly worked at defendant G.M.J.'s McDonald's at 911 S. State St. in Jerseyville from August until September of 2011. During that same time period, defendant Bryan worked as the restaurant's general manager, according to the complaint.

During her employment, Benson was also receiving social security disability benefits of $1,513 per month, which she had been getting since April of 2000, the suit states. She relied on the money to pay her food, shelter, clothing and necessary bills, the complaint says.

However, Benson claims she suddenly lost access to the additional monthly funds in October of 2012 after Bryan had written numerous payroll checks to her. Bryan would then take the checks and cash them at defendant CNB Bank & Trust, according to the complaint.

It was not until April of 2013 that Benson was able to restore her social security benefits, the suit states. However, because she never received back pay for the months that her social security benefits were halted, she lost her home and was turned over to collection agencies, the complaint says.

On March 14, 2013, Bryan pled guilty to theft relating to the checks, Benson claims. the lawsuit claims.

Benson is seeking a judgment of more than $500,000, plus costs, attorney's fees and other relief the court deems just. She will be represented by Tammy M. Julian of Farrell, Hamilton and Julian in Godfrey.

Madison County Circuit Court case number 14-L-1150.


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