Category Archives: Disability

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Seventh Circuit Holds Long-Term Leave is Not a Reasonable Accommodation Under the ADA

The Seventh Circuit recently held in Severson v. Heartland Woodcraft, Inc. that a long-term leave of absence, particularly one extending beyond the twelve weeks of leave guaranteed by the Family and Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”), does not warrant protection under the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”). Raymond Severson was terminated from his job as a … Continue Reading

Ramirez v. Dependable Highway Express: The Reasonable Accommodation of an Employee’s Family

In Luis Castro-Ramirez v. Dependable Highway Express, the California Court of Appeal held that California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (“FEHA”) – which requires employers to reasonably accommodate employees with disabilities – now requires employers to reasonably accommodate employees who are associated with a disabled person.  This is an unprecedented decision and will likely to … Continue Reading

Federal Contractors Face New Requirements Regarding Recruitment, Hiring, and Identification of Individuals with Disabilities

Effective March 24, 2014, a new rule from the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs will require federal contractors and subcontractors to take additional steps to recruit, hire, and retain individuals with disabilities, including surveying employees regarding their disability status and making efforts to employ a minimum of seven percent disabled workers.… Continue Reading

New York Court of Appeals Places Burden on Employer to Plead that Employee Seeking Indefinite Leave Cannot Satisfy the Essential Requisites of the Job

The New York Court of Appeals recently overturned the dismissal of an employee’s discrimination claim under the New York City Human Rights Law (“NYCHRL”), while at the same time upholding the dismissal of the employee’s disability claims under the New York State Human Rights Law (“NYSHRL”).  In doing so, the Court of Appeals emphasized the … Continue Reading

New York City Now Requires Reasonable Accommodations for Pregnant Workers

Today, Mayor Bloomberg signed into law an amendment to the New York City Human Rights Law requiring employers with four or more employees to provide reasonable accommodations to pregnant workers.  The legislation, which was earlier passed unanimously by the New York City Council, becomes effective in January 30, 2014.… Continue Reading

OFCCP May Impose Explicit Goals for Federal Contractors’ Hiring of Individuals with Disabilities

By Evgenia Fkiaras Following a trend by the Federal government to liberalize anti-discrimination laws in favor of employees, the Department of Labor Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (“OFCCP”) has proposed regulations that would require employers who wish to keep their contracts (and subcontracts) with the Federal government to attempt to maintain a workforce where … Continue Reading

Court Says Okay to Terminate Bipolar Employee Who Threatened Coworkers

Before filing suit under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act ("FEHA"), an employee must exhaust her administrative remedies with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing ("DFEH"). In the recently decided case of Wills v. Superior Court, the court gave little leeway to an employee, finding that she failed to exhaust her administrative remedies … Continue Reading

Employers May Be Liable For Violating ADA Based On Vague And Overbroad Medical Questionnaires

In Scott v. Napolitano, a California federal district court recently provided guidance on how employers may draft medical examination questionnaires that comply with the Americans With Disabilities Act (“ADA”). The plaintiff, a security officer, sued his employer for violation of the ADA, disability discrimination, and retaliation after he was suspended and then terminated for refusing … Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit Extends Rehabilitation Act to Independent Contractors

On November 19, 2009, the Ninth Circuit handed down its opinion in Fleming v. Yuma Regional Medical Center, 07-16427. The court faced the difficult task of interpreting the interplay between Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (29 U.S.C. § 794) and Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The Sixth and Eighth Circuits had … Continue Reading

Court of Appeal: Employee Can Sue For Disability Bias Despite Absence Of Medical Evidence And Absence Of Any Explicit Request For An Accommodation

A California Court of Appeal has ruled that an employee who used a company-provided scooter to move around a factory can sue for disability bias after the scooter broke and was not replaced by the employer.  This despite the fact that there was no medical evidence of disability, the employee worked for six months without … Continue Reading

Second Circuit Court Of Appeals Rules That An Employer Must Notify Its Insurer Of A Potential Claim Upon Receiving A Demand Letter From Counsel

The Second Circuit’s ruling in Westrec Marina Management v. Arrowood Indemnity Co. is a warning to employers to report potential claims to their insurance carrier as soon as possible or face denial of coverage.  In Westrec, an employee filed a charge of discrimination against Westrec with the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) … Continue Reading

A Cautionary Tale For Employers Of Employees Claiming Disabilities Relating To Mental Illness

State and federal law prohibits employers from discriminating against employees with physical, as well as mental disabilities.  In addition, employers are required to reasonably accommodate employees with known physical or mental disabilities as long as doing so does not cause undue hardship to the employer.  Gambini v. Total Renal Care, Inc., a recent 9th Circuit … Continue Reading
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