ADA in the News: May 12, 2017

Employee Responsible for Breakdown in ADA Interactive Process Can’t Sue

Lexology

An employee who repeatedly failed to return telephone calls and provide information needed to understand her job restrictions was responsible for the breakdown in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) interactive process, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit recently ruled. A social worker regularly required to write and document her work suffered a hand injury. She was placed on rest, underwent a series of follow-up exams, and returned to work while continuing treatment. The information she provided the employer did not indicate what specific accommodations were necessary to perform her daily tasks. When the employer sought additional details, the employee failed to respond to multiple phone calls and a letter. She filed suit instead, asserting failure to accommodate in violation of the ADA. The federal appellate panel affirmed summary judgment for the employer, holding that the employee was responsible for the breakdown in the interactive process.

Former USAir flight attendant loses appeal in legal malpractice case

The Pennsylvania Record

The complaint “alleged claims for violations of Title VII, the ADA, and the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act." Cooper also advised her in a letter that “I am concerned because the only charge you filed with the EEOC is ... [an ADA] charge. Quite frankly, this is not an ADA case. In fact, [USAir] admits you are disabled. If anything, this is a sex discrimination or retaliation case under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. Unfortunately, no charge was ever filed with the EEOC on these issues.” 

Colorado in focus: ADA lawsuit begins to fall apart; attorney could face sanctions

Watchdog.org

One of the plaintiffs involved in the waves of disability lawsuits that have targeted the Southwest admitted under oath her cases were, in part, malicious and abusive.

Alyssa Carton, who filed 99 cases against businesses alleging violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act, appeared in U.S. District Court in Albuquerque on Thursday. The hearing was to determine if she qualified for a waiver that would allow her to avoid prepayment of court fees, which amount to roughly $40,000.

Carton was originally set to appear last week, but skipped the hearing. She told the judge Thursday that she had “panicked” and had lied about her city bus breaking down.

During the hearing, which lasted several hours, Carton admitted that she signed a confidential agreement with a company called Litigation Management and Financial Services. She also initially told the judge she did not receive $50 for each case she filed, which is contrary to what she told Denver7 Investigator Ryan Luby and journalists in New Mexico and Arizona.

Oklahoma Case Serves as Reminder that Pregnancy Alone, Without More, Is Not an ADA Disability

Lexology

A former employee’s claim that she was pregnant and subject to lifting restrictions failed to allege a valid claim under the Americas with Disabilities Act (ADA), according to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Oklahoma. LaCount v. South Lewis SH OPCO, LLC, Case No. 16-CV-0545-CVE-TLW (N.D. Okla. May 5, 2017).

Federal judge denies dismissal in ADA suit against Florida Highway Patrol

Florida Record

The U.S. District for the Southern District of Florida has ruled that a federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) suit against the Florida Highway Patrol can move forward.

Airlines Are Letting Old Technology Abuse Their Customers

Backchannel

It’s 2017. Why are air carriers still failing people with disabilities?

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