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Henri Courpron, AIG Executive, Loses $1 Million Because Of Office Romance

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WORKPLACE ROMANCE
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Sometimes the cost of love is difficult to calculate. Other times your employer does it for you.

It's been discovered that Henri Courpron, the chief executive ofAIG's aircraft leasing unit, engaged in a relationship with an employee that worked underneath him, The Wall Street Journal reports. For that, Courpron will lose a million dollars

Courpron, who previously had a competent record, helped turn around the company's aircraft-leasing unit, according to the WSJ. “Courpron has significant technical knowledge and skills and was hired for a reason,” George Hamlin, president of Hamlin Transportation Consulting, told Businessweek. “How people view Henri Courpron as a result of this, that’s unpredictable and personal."

AIG first investigated Courpron after the firm received a complaint alleging the existence of a relationship. But while AIG has decided to dock Courpron's pay -- originally $5.4 million, according to Businessweek -- an internal investigation found that claims of Courpron making improper decisions as a result of the relationship were "unfounded."

Of course, the isn't the first time a CEO has been caught engaged in an inappropriate relationship.

Aircraft manufacturer Boeing fired its CEO in 2005 after discovering that he was having an affair with a female employee, the Washington Post reported at the time. Then this past May, Best Buy CEO Brian Dunn was found to have engaged in an inappropriate relationship with a female employee too, CNN reported. The company alleged that his actions "negatively impacted the work environment." Dunn stepped down in April, receiving a $6.6 million severance package on his way out.

Not that office romance is uncommon by any means. Indeed, 38 percent of people in a recent CareerBuilder.com survey said they'd engaged in some sort of office romance. Just look at some of the most famous and successful marriages of today.

Bill and Melinda Gates began a relationship when he was still CEO of Microsoft and she his employee. Even First Lady Michelle Obama is guilty. As the Washington Post recounts, the First Lady met Barack Obama when she was assigned to be his mentor at the law firm Sidney and Austin.

Don't expect the trend toward more in-office romance to slow down. According to a recently published survey, 84 percent of workers ages 18 to 29 have stated that they would have a romantic relationship with a co-worker, compared to just 36 percent of respondents aged 30-46.

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