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Sep 9, 2022

Maximum protection: Gender dysphoria covered by ADA 

By Jason Boleman   Gender dysphoria is a covered “disability” within the Americans with Disabilities Act, or ADA, the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled in a case of first impression.  The decision in Williams v. Kincaid (VLW 022-2-204) reverses the district court and allows a transgender woman’s lawsuit against the Fairfax County sheriff […]

Oct 10, 2018

Civil Rights – ADA – Gun Ownership – Mental Disability

Plaintiff alleges that he was denied the right to purchase a firearm when a background check, which was mandated by South Carolina law, indicated that he has a mental illness. These allegations do not relate to a public program or service; therefore, they do not state a claim under Title II of the Americans with […]

Jun 25, 2018

Labor & Employment – ADA – Termination – Essential Function – Physical Presence

Regardless of what other people said about the need for plaintiff to be present on-site to do his job, plaintiff’s letter to his physician said, “My job consists of traveling to job sites located in Greenville, Spartanburg, and Anderson. I am the sole consultant for these projects and no one else would be traveling to […]

May 4, 2018

Labor & Employment – ADA – Constructive Discharge – Accommodations Process – Early Retirement

Even though plaintiff wanted to pass a required qualification by simulation while the defendant-employer wanted him to train directly on plant equipment (which could only be done during the nighttime when plaintiff’s sleep apnea prevented him from working), since defendant was still engaged in the interactive process of trying to accommodate plaintiff and only discontinued […]

Apr 23, 2018

Labor & Employment – ADA – Accommodation Process – Retirement

Plaintiff’s sleep apnea prevented him from working at night, but his job required competence on a machine on which he could only train at night. Although plaintiff’s doctor had agreed to a two-month suspension of plaintiff’s work restrictions, and although the parties were in the midst of the accommodation negotiation process, when plaintiff came to […]

Apr 17, 2018

Civil Rights – ADA & Rehabilitation Act – Provision of Services – Wheelchair and Speech Assistance

Plaintiff Kobe has been provided with the augmentative communications device (ACD) and the wheelchair he requested; he has failed to make out claims against all but one of the defendants. As to the defendant-governor, based on plaintiff’s allegations of, inter alia, the delay in providing the needed devices (e.g., Kobe was initially provided an ACD […]

Apr 13, 2018

Labor & Employment – ADA – Termination – Legitimate Reason – Loaded Firearm, Unlocked Vehicle – Disparate Discipline – Hostile Environment – Opioid Addiction

Even though plaintiff’s co-worker was merely given a warning when he violated the defendant-employer’s policy against leaving loaded weapons in plain view in a personal vehicle, since the co-worker’s vehicle was locked while plaintiff’s vehicle was left unlocked, plaintiff has not shown that he was subjected to disparate discipline when he was fired for his […]

Oct 6, 2017

Labor & Employment – ADA – Discriminatory Discharge Claim – Open Positions – Failure to Apply

  Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. McLeod Health, Inc. (Lawyers Weekly No. 002-152-17, 29 pp.) (Bruce Howe Hendricks, J.) 4:14-cv-03615; D.S.C. Holding: After the complainant’s functional capacity evaluation indicated that she would be unable to return to her former position, she did not express interest in reassignment to any of the defendant-employer’s open positions until [&h[...]

Aug 11, 2017

Civil Rights – ADA – Retaliation Claims – Administrative – Medicaid Benefit Cuts

Stogsdill v. South Carolina Department of Health & Human Services (Lawyers Weekly No. 002-096-17, 40 pp.) (Joseph Anderson Jr., J.) 3:12-cv-00007; D.S.C. Holding: Although plaintiffs did not receive all the Medicaid services they requested, they received what the law allowed at the time, and their services were not decreased because of their protected activity, i.e., […]

Jun 1, 2017

Labor & Employment – ADA – Epilepsy – Failure to Return to Work

May v. Remedy Diner, Inc. (Lawyers Weekly No. 002-030-17, 10 pp.) (Terrence Boyle, J.) 5:16-cv-00116; D.S.C. Holding: After a Jan. 16, 2015, epileptic seizure at work, plaintiff’s doctor released him to return to work on Jan. 18, 2015, but plaintiff failed to either return to work or to find someone to cover his shifts. Accordingly, […]

Apr 25, 2017

Labor & Employment – ADA – Service Dog – PTSD – Reasonable Accommodations

Clark v. School District Five (Lawyers Weekly No. 002-108-17, 30 pp.) (Cameron McGowan Currie, S.J.) 3:15-cv-02864; D.S.C. Holding: Where (1) plaintiff’s trained service dog, Pearl, allowed plaintiff to work without any incidence of panic attacks at her school’s original location; (2) defendant gave varying reasons for its refusal to allow Pearl to accompany plaintiff when […]

Mar 24, 2017

Labor & Employment – ADA – Eleventh Amendment Immunity – Federal Funding

Squires v. South Carolina Department of Health & Environmental Control (Lawyers Weekly No. 002-082-17, 10 pp.) (R. Bryan Harwell, J.) 4:16-cv-02414; D.S.C. Holding: Even though 42 U.S.C. § 2000d-7(a)(1) abrogates Eleventh Amendment immunity for states that receive federal financial assistance and violate several listed statutes “or the provisions of any other Federal statute prohibiting dis[...]

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