Lite 99
Tampa's Feel Good Favorites

Back in 2021, Disney purchased land in the Lake Nona area of Orlando to build a campus that would relocate thousands of Disney employees to Central Florida.

Lake Nona Town Center ©Lake Nona

They later announced that this plan was delayed as of June 2022 and the move was again delayed for over 3 years — before the official announcement was made pulling the plug on the project in May 2023. But that wasn’t before some Disney employees uprooted their lives and families at the request of the House of Mouse, and now, they’ve filed a lawsuit against the company for just that.

The Walt Disney Company is no stranger to lawsuits, but this latest one comes from within the House of Mouse itself. According to the Los Angeles Times, a lawsuit was filed on Tuesday against Disney in the Los Angeles County Superior Court over the failed move.

Obtained Via the Orlando Business Journal

The suit alleges that numerous workers followed the company’s calls, sold their Los Angeles homes, and moved to Central Florida — only for the project to be canceled. Plaintiffs Maria De La Cruz and George Fong — who are both still employed by Disney — alleged they were “fraudulently induced” to relocate to Florida by being led to believe they would lose their jobs if they turned down the move.

Cinderella Castle

According to the suit, De La Cruz and Fong agreed to relocate in November 2021 after Disney told affected employees they had 90 days to “consider and make the decision that’s best for them.” De La Cruz, a vice president of product design, sold her house in Altadena in May 2022.

“Mr. Fong also sold his home, which was a particularly painful decision because it was the family home he had grown up in and inherited,” the suit alleges. Fong serves as a creative director of product design at Disney. His family home was in Los Angeles.

But, one year after selling their homes and moving across the country, De La Cruz and Fong found out that Disney had canceled the Lake Nona project altogether.

Spaceship Earth welcomes you to EPCOT… and to World Celebration!

When the project was canceled, Disney gave a statement, saying: “Given the considerable changes that have occurred since the announcement of this project, including new leadership and changing business conditions, we have decided not to move forward with construction of the campus.”

They did acknowledge that some employees had already moved and said they would be discussing the situation with individual employees, including making plans to move the employees back to California. However, the lawsuit alleges compensation packages offered to affected employees were inadequate and that several people refused to make the move, still remaining employed by Disney.

Animal Kingdom

Once Disney pulled the plug on the project, home prices in the Orlando area fell while Los Angeles home prices have climbed — along with interest rates. As for De La Cruz and Fong, they’ve made the move back to California anyway. Fong’s new South Pasadena home has “considerably less square footage than his previous Los Angeles home,” while De La Cruz is till in the process of moving back.

The class-action lawsuit proposed would seek to represent “all current and former California Disney employees who relocated from California to Florida as a result of Disney’s announcement of the Lake Nona Project.” As for now, the damages being sought are unspecified and Disney has not yet responded to requests for comment.

Hollywood Studios

In the meantime, we’ll have to wait and see if Disney publicly responds to the suit or what ends up happening next. Either way, we’ll be on the lookout for the latest updates so don’t forget to stay tuned to Disney Food Blog for more!

Bob Iger Responds to a Huge Disney Criticism

Join the DFB Newsletter to get all the breaking news right in your inbox! Click here to Subscribe!


Oh boy, planning a Disney trip can be quite the adventure, and we totally get it! But fear not, dear friends, we compiled EVERYTHING you need (and the things to avoid!) to plan the ULTIMATE Disney vacation.

Whether you’re a rookie or a seasoned pro, our insider tips and tricks will have you exploring the parks like never before. So come along with us, and get planning your most magical vacation ever!

What do you think of this news? Tell us in the comments.

The post NEWS: Disney Hit with Lawsuit Over Failed Company Move to Florida first appeared on the disney food blog.