News & Analysis as of

Passing a DOT medical exam is a ‘marginal function’ of the job?

In a recent opinion by the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals involving a Type-1 insulin-dependent diabetic, the court found that passing a Department of Transportation medical examination was an impermissible “qualification...more

Where is the Internet?

Is the Internet a place? Apparently, no one’s entirely sure, but one federal appeals court has asked the California Supreme Court to figure it out in the context of a lawsuit that is pending against Cable News Network....more

Pennsylvania Federal Court Rules on Important Grane Healthcare ADA Case

In a recent decision that has been making headlines across the country, a Pennsylvania federal court held that a local Cambria County company conducted over 300 unlawful pre-offer medical exams in violation of the ADA. ...more

ADA Applies to Students with Food Allergies on University Campuses

In 2013, the Department of Justice announced a landmark settlement with Lesley University (“Lesley” or the “University”) in Cambridge, MA. Stemming from complaints about the University’s treatment of students with food...more

EEOC Roundup (January 2014)

Employment is heavily regulated in the U.S., where it is illegal to discriminate against a job applicant or an employee because of the person's race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), national origin, age (40 or...more

EEOC Sues Wal-Mart Stores East for Disability Discrimination

Cockeysville Store Refused to Accommodate Applicant With End-Stage Renal Disease, Federal Agency Says - BALTIMORE - Wal-Mart Stores East, LP violated federal law when it refused to employ an individual with end-stage...more

Risky Business: TPAs as Employers under the ADA

Last week, in Brown v. Bank of America et al., No. 1:13-cv-00367-JAW (D. Me. March 7, 2013), a federal district court in Maine refused to dismiss a Bank employee’s disability discrimination claims against a third party...more

Irregular Attendance May Render An Employee With A Disability "Unqualified"

In a recent case, Daniel Mecca v. Florida Health Services Center, Inc., Case No. 8:12-cv-02561 (M.D. Fla. February 3, 2014), a federal court in Florida held that where regular attendance is an "essential function" of a...more

Banks Previously Sued in Title III ADA Class Action Lawsuits Now Getting Sued Again in Second Wave of Accessibility Lawsuits

A Pittsburgh-based law firm, which has filed more than 100 class action lawsuits under Title III of the Americans with Disability Act (ADA) in federal district courts throughout the United States against banks on behalf of a...more

Is An Employee Who Is Six Days out of Rehab “Disabled” Under the TCHRA?

The Texas Commission on Human Rights Act (TCHRA) provides that a “current condition of addiction” to alcohol, drugs, or controlled substances is not a covered “disability.” In Melendez v. Houston Independent School District...more

Washington (State) District Court Dismisses Putative ADA Class Action

As we’ve commented before, disability claims are particularly poor fodder for class actions. Unlike other protected traits, there are often threshold questions as to whether an individual is even in a protected class. Even in...more

Partying In The Store

The cost of bad behavior in the workplace can be significant and assorted. Bad behavior damages morale, results in a loss to a company’s profits, jeopardizes safety, and diminishes productivity. Use of drugs and alcohol – or...more

Does a 100% Healed Policy Violate the ADA? What to Require of Employees Returning From Leave

Earlier this month, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois denied a motion to dismiss a claim filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) on behalf of a class of individuals challenging...more

On Equal Footing: Fourth Circuit Disables Temporary vs. Permanent Distinction Under the ADA

Last month, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit held that a “sufficiently severe” temporary impairment may constitute a disability under the American Disabilities Act (“ADA”). Summers v. Altarum Inst.,...more

Yes! Regular, Reliable Attendance At Work IS Important Under The ADA After All!

No matter what position the EEOC might take, I'll always take the position that an employee's regular, reliable attendance is an essential function of the job. So, when an employee wants to arrive at work at any time,...more

You May Think They Are Disabled But That Doesn’t Mean You “Regarded“ Them as Disabled

While the 2008 amendments to the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) made it easier for employees to state a claim that he or she was “regarded as” having a disability, a recent decision from a federal court highlights...more

ADA Protects Individuals with Cancer, Diabetes, Epilepsy and Intellectual Disabilities

Nearly 34 million Americans diagnosed with cancer, diabetes or epilepsy, and over two million suffering from an intellectual disability are now protected from discrimination under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)....more

Another Reminder That Inflexible Employment Policies and the ADA Don’t Play Well Together – Court Refuses to Dismiss EEOC Action...

One theme that resonates throughout court decisions and EEOC filings over the last few years is that application of inflexible employment policies to disabled employees often runs afoul of the Americans with Disabilities Act...more

The Lesson Of EEOC v. UPS And Automatic Termination Provisions: Engage In The ADA Interactive Process

Let me share a story about UPS, although in the end, this story has nothing to do with UPS. For about the past 10 years, UPS has maintained a policy of terminating any employees who are unable to return to work after...more

Fourth Circuit Upholds ADAAA's Broad Definition of "Disability"

Congress passed the Americans with Disabilities Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAAA) over five years ago on Sept.17, 2008. The act’s stated purpose was to reinstate “a broad scope of protection to be available under the ADA” as the...more

Temporary Accommodation Does Not Waive ADA "Essential Functions" Defense

Good employers often attempt to provide support for employees who are facing personal issues. Such was the case when Selena Hancock developed a nerve condition that prevented her from lifting more than 20 pounds. Although an...more

March 24th is Approaching: Complying With the New OFCCP Regulations

Last year, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (“OFCCP”) issued new regulations implementing Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act, as amended (“Section 503”), and the Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment...more

Broad Definition of "Disability" Endorsed By Fourth Circuit

In its recently published opinion in Summers v. Altarum Institute, Corp., No. 13-1645, decided January 23, 2014, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit became the first federal appellate court to hold that...more

Fourth Circuit Rules That Temporary Impairments May Be ADA Covered Disabilities

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, the federal appellate court covering North Carolina, among other states, recently ruled that a temporary impairment may be a covered disability under the Americans with Disabilities Act...more

Recent Decision on Temporary Disability Under the ADA Should Give Employers Pause

On January 23, 2014, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit (based in Virginia) held in Summers v. Altarum Inst., Corp. that a temporary injury, if sufficiently severe, may qualify as a “disability” under the...more

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