Dallas Healthcare Service Corporation Pays $25,000 To Settle Discrimination Suit
Dallas employment lawyer Keith Clouse discusses company’s recent settlement with the EEOC for disability discrimination claim
Earlier this month AccentCare, Inc. (“AccentCare”), a post-acute home healthcare company headquartered in Dallas, agreed to pay $25,000 to settle a disability discrimination suit brought by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) on behalf of a former employee. The EEOC is the agency charged with enforcing federal workplace discrimination laws. One important employment discrimination statute is the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”). Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, § 2 et seq., 42 U.S.C.A. § 12101 et seq., available at https://www.ada.gov/2010_regs.htm. The ADA guarantees equal employment opportunities to individuals with disabilities by prohibiting workplace discrimination against those individuals based on their disability. Furthermore, the ADA requires employers to provide a reasonable accommodation to any employee or qualified job applicant with a disability, unless doing so would cause the employer “undue hardship.”
According to the lawsuit brought in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas, the former IT analyst notified AccentCare of her bipolar disorder when requesting time off to visit her health care provider. The EEOC further alleged that AccentCare terminated the employee one day after hearing about her disability and receiving her request to take leave. By refusing to consider the employee’s accommodation request, AccentCare’s alleged actions were in violation of the ADA.
Under the terms of the settlement, AccentCare will pay the employee $25,000 and implement training for all its employees regarding the legal requirements under the ADA. AccentCare has also agreed to document and report all disability discrimination complaints to the EEOC.
This case demonstrates the significant repercussions employers can face for violating federal employment discrimination laws. Any employer with fifteen or more employees is covered by the ADA and thus must comply with its regulations. A covered employer who learns of an employee’s disability or receives a request for leave because of such disability should engage in open communication with that employee to figure out the best alternative to accommodate that employee’s disability in the workplace. Examples of reasonable accommodations could include modifying the employee’s work schedule or making their workspace more accessible. In addition, employers should train all supervisors and managers regarding the requirements under the ADA so they are able to recognize when a reasonable accommodation may be needed. These preventative steps can avoid a future costly suit for disability discrimination due to mishandling of an accommodation request.
This article is presented by the Dallas employment lawyers at Clouse Dunn LLP. To speak with an employment attorney about a workplace discrimination matter, send an email to email@example.com or call (214) 239-2705.
About Keith Clouse / Dallas Employment Lawyer Keith Clouse
Keith Clouse is a Texas employment law specialist with over 25 years of experience representing senior executives, business owners, physicians, and corporations in complex employment litigation, arbitration, and negotiations. Senior executives, physicians and other professionals consistently rely on Mr. Clouse for employment law expertise and advice on employment contracts, covenants not to compete, severance agreements, trade secret disputes, breach of fiduciary duty claims, and claims based on workplace discrimination, retaliation, and harassment. Source CDKLawyers.com
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