Category Archives: Americans With Disabilities Act (“ADA”)

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New York’s Highest Court Narrowly Construes New York City Human Rights Law To Bar Disability Discrimination Claims Based on Perceived Alcoholism

Last month, New York’s highest court took the unprecedented step of construing the New York City Human Rights Law (“NYCHRL”) more narrowly than its state and federal counterparts to bar plaintiffs’ city law disability discrimination claims. Answering a certified question from the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, the New York Court … Continue Reading

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

Second Circuit Holds: You Can’t Always Get What You Want – As Long As Your Employer Gives You What You Need (An Effective Accommodation)

On May 21, 2015, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, in Noll v. International Business Machines Corporation, Case No. 13-4096 (May 21, 2015), affirmed a decision by the Southern District of New York which granted the defendant-employer summary judgment on the plaintiff-employee’s claims under the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) and … Continue Reading

An Ounce Of Prevention…Does Your Voluntary Wellness Program Comply With Proposed EEOC Regulations?

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) recently issued proposed regulations addressing how the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) applies to corporate wellness programs.  These proposed regulations are intended to provide employers with guidance on how to encourage workers to participate in wellness programs without violating federal law.  Employers with wellness programs, or those who … Continue Reading

Sixth Circuit Holds That Ford Motor Co. Was Not Required to Accommodate Telecommuting

On April 10, 2015, in an eagerly awaited decision interpreting the reasonable accommodation provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled, en banc, in favor of Ford Motor Co., rejecting the EEOC’s claim that Ford violated the ADA by not allowing a disabled employee … 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

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

Ninth Circuit Holds that an Employer Need Not Reasonably Accommodate an Employee Who Does Not Meet the Job’s Minimum Requirements

By Travis Anderson and Gregg A. Fisch On December 8, 2011, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held that a disabled teacher who failed to meet the minimum requirements for her position was not a “qualified individual” under the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), and that her employer, therefore, was not required to accommodate her … Continue Reading

A Workers’ Compensation Rating Of 100% Disabled Does Not Relieve An Employer Of Its Obligations Under The ADA And FEHA

Cuiellette v. City of Los Angeles (April 22, 2011) cautions employers that when an employee has been rated as 100% disabled for workers’ compensation purposes, the employer is not relieved of its duties under the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) and Fair Employment and Housing Act (“FEHA”). Practically speaking, a workers’ compensation rating, even as … Continue Reading

Lawsuit by Deaf Employee Based on Failure to Provide Sign Language Interpreter Sent to Jury

In a recent decision involving a deaf employee’s professed need for a sign language interpreter to understand and participate in mandatory departmental meetings, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals unanimously reaffirmed that pursuant to the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), an appropriate “reasonable accommodation” must be effective to enable a covered employee to enjoy equal … 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

New “EEO Is The Law” Poster Supplement To Be Required November 21, 2009

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) announced the release of a new mandatory supplement to the “EEO Is The Law” poster required to be displayed by private employers, state and local governments, educational institutions and labor organizations. The new supplement, which revises the September 2002 poster, is available to be downloaded or ordered by … Continue Reading

Inflexible Medical Leave Policies May Violate the Americans with Disabilities Act

On August 27, 2009, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed a putative class action against United Parcel Service, Inc. claiming the company’s 12-month leave of absence policy violates the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (“ADA”).… Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit Holding Reminds Employers To Think Carefully Before Denying Requested Accommodations

The Ninth Circuit’s holding in Gribben v. United Parcel Service illustrates the principle that employing an overly technical analysis to determine an employer’s obligations to its employees under the Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA") is risky.  The ADA requires employers to provide reasonable accommodation to qualified individuals with disabilities, which it defines as “physical or … Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit Tightens Requirements For Use Of Across The Board Qualification Standards Under The ADA

Employers who use across the board qualification standards, such as hearing and vision tests, to reduce safety risks that potentially screen out disabled employees may need to reevaluate these standards.  In Bates v. UPS, the Ninth Circuit tightened the already stringent standards for employers who use such across the board qualification standards in the name … Continue Reading

NINTH CIRCUIT MAKES IT EASIER FOR EMPLOYEES TO PURSUE ADA CLAIMS

In Head v. Glacier Northwest Inc., the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held that the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) does not require employees to produce comparative or medical evidence to create a genuine dispute of material fact as to whether they have an impairment that substantially limits a major life … Continue Reading
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