Oprah Winfrey Lawsuit: Harpo Studios Sued For Breach Of Contract After Not Paying Fitness Duo
Two fitness trainers filed a lawsuit against Oprah Winfrey's Harpo Studios Wednesday after they allegedly were hired to create a "customized fitness program" for Harpo employees and were never paid.
Dina Castillo and Frank Nunez, a married couple that owns Unicus Fitness, were hired to create the "O Fitness Challenge" in June of 2008, the Chicago Tribune reports. The program was to become a segment on the Oprah Winfrey Show and Harpo representatives allegedly asked the couple to appear on an Oprah Radio XM program hosted by Winfrey's former personal trainer, Bob Green.
The couple, excited about their scheduled radio appearance, sent a mass email out to their clients asking them to listen to the show, according to the suit filed in Cook County Circuit Court.
"Soon after, Harpo officials told the couple that the mass e-mail violated a confidentiality agreement with the talk show's parent company, which terminated their O Fitness Challenge program," the Tribune reports.
Despite the fact that the couple had already appeared on Green's show on March 16, 2009, Harpo accused them of "a gross and egregious" confidentiality violation, the suit alleges.
The suit claims Unicus had already spent a lot of time working with Harpo employees, and estimated they provided $100,000 to $130,000 in services. They invoiced Harpo for $63,628.50, but were told they would not be paid since they violated a confidentiality agreement and that their services were "voluntary."
The couple is seeking unspecified damages "to compensate Unicus for the fair value of the services performed."
This isn't the first time Winfrey has been slapped with a lawsuit by a former employee. In October, a flight attendant on Winfrey's private jet claimed the talk show queen fired her for having sex on board--which she said never happened.