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Death Threats Lead To Employer's ADA Victory

It is rare that the most employee-friendly of all federal appellate courts cites “common sense” in support of one of its decisions. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals recently did just that, however, dismissing a disability discrimination claim filed by an employee who was fired for making death threats against company managers. In Mayo v. PCC Structurals, Inc., the Court ruled that the worker was not a “qualified individual with a disability,” and therefore could not sustain an Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) lawsuit.

Your Compliance Toolbox: 7 Tips for a Successful Interactive Process

Dealing with issues related to accommodation requests at work can be a daunting task—even for the most seasoned HR or legal professional. The path to a successful interactive process and a meaningful analysis of an accommodation request is fraught with landmines at every turn. Though professionals are required to use judgment and perform an individualized assessment for each new accommodation request, there are some protocols employers can use as a guideline each time the need arises.

Discrimination and Retaliation Claims of Nurse with Night Blindness May Proceed, Federal Court Rules

Denying a nursing home’s motion for summary judgment, a federal court in Tennessee has allowed a nurse who suffered from impaired vision to proceed with her age and disability discrimination claims and a claim for retaliation. Harris v. MatureCare of Standifer Place, LLC d/b/a The Health Center at Standifer Place, C.A. No. 1:14-CV-64 (E.D. Tenn. Aug. 5, 2015).

Alcoholism and the ADA: The DOs and DON’Ts of Alcohol Testing in the Workplace

The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended (ADA) considers alcoholism to be a “disability.” Individuals who suffer from alcoholism are entitled to the protections of the ADA just as those with significant mental illnesses or those confined to wheelchairs are. Thus, employers should be aware of certain legal issues, concerns, and prohibitions when questioning job applicants or employees about alcohol intake or when conducting alcohol testing.

Death Threats Against Co-Workers Defeat Employee Disability Discrimination Claim, Federal Court Rules

A depressed employee who was fired for threatening to kill his co-workers was not a qualified individual entitled to protection under the Americans with Disabilities Act, as the employee could not perform essential job functions, with or without an accommodation, a federal appeals court in San Francisco has ruled, affirming judgment in favor of the employer. Mayo v. PCC Structurals, Inc., No. 13-35643 (9th Cir. July 28, 2015). The Ninth Circuit has jurisdiction over Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington.

Death Threats against Co-Workers Defeat Employee Disability Discrimination Claim, Federal Court Rules

A depressed employee who was fired for threatening to kill his co-workers was not a qualified individual entitled to protection under the Americans with Disabilities Act, as the employee could not perform essential job functions, with or without an accommodation, a federal appeals court in San Francisco has ruled, affirming judgment in favor of the employer. Mayo v. PCC Structurals, Inc., No. 13-35643 (9th Cir. July 28, 2015). The Ninth Circuit has jurisdiction over Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington.

Do multiple death threats from a depressed employee make him ineligible for protection under disability laws? The Ninth Circuit says Yes.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has determined that an employee’s reaction to stress that included threats to kill co-workers – made in “chilling detail and on multiple occasions” – meant that the individual could not perform an essential function of his job and, therefore, was not a “qualified individual” for protection under disability discrimination law. Mayo v. PCC Structurals, Inc., 9th Cir., No. 13-35643, July 28, 2015.

Stroke Victim Wanted More from Flossmoor under ADA

Sometimes it seems an employer has done a lot to accommodate an employee under the ADA, yet the employee claims the employer should have done more. The Seventh Circuit addressed such a situation in Swanson v. Village of Flossmoor (7th Cir. July 24, 2015).

Is Everyone Disabled? Temporary Disabilities and the Ever-Expanding Definition of “Disability"

Following the amendments to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)—the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAAA)—employers were told to refrain from asking employees whether they were disabled. The employer community took this instruction with a grain of salt, knowing that although the scope of employees covered under the amendments was significantly greater, there were certain conditions that did not constitute a disability. More recent case law may be proving that theory wrong and, instead, showing that “all” (or almost all!) employees are disabled.

Six things about the ADA that even an employer can love.

How time flies — you’re already 25 years old! I have seen many lovely tributes to you this week, and a couple of my favorites are here and here. I hope you don’t mind one more from me.