California Employment Law Update

Tag Archives: disability discrimination

Marijuana Compassionate Use Act Did Not Protect Employee From Termination

Ross v. Ragingwire Telecommunications, Inc., 42 Cal. 4th 920 (2008) In accordance with the Compassionate Use Act of 1996 (Proposition 215), Gary Ross had a physician’s recommendation to use marijuana for his chronic back pain. Ragingwire offered Ross a job as a lead systems administrator subject to his passing a drug test, which he failed … Continue Reading

UPS May Not Have Violated The ADA By Excluding Deaf Drivers Who Failed To Satisfy DOT Hearing Standard

Bates v. United Parcel Serv., 511 F.3d 974 (9th Cir. 2007) (en banc) One of the requirements applied by UPS to those applicants seeking to drive the familiar brown “package cars” was that they pass the physical examination (including a hearing exam) that the DOT requires of drivers of commercial vehicles of a gross vehicle weight … Continue Reading

Employee’s Age Discrimination Lawsuit Can Proceed Against Google

Reid v. Google, Inc., 155 Cal. App. 4th 1342 (2007) Brian Reid, who was employed for fewer than two years as Google’s Director of Operations and its Director of Engineering, sued Google after his termination, alleging age and disability discrimination, intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress and related claims. Reid was 54 years old … Continue Reading

Disabled Employee Bears Burden Of Proving Ability To Perform Essential Duties Of The Job

Green v. State of Cal., 2007 WL 2388920 (Cal. S. Ct. Aug. 23, 2007) Dwight Green worked as a stationary engineer for the Department of Corrections at the California Institute for Men in Chino. Seven years after contracting hepatitis C (presumably from the sewer pipes at the Institute), Green began taking the drug interferon, which … Continue Reading

Employee Who Falsified Timecard Was Not Terminated Because Of His Disability

King v. United Parcel Serv., 2007 WL 1493316 (Cal. Ct. App. 2007) Richard King, a supervisorial employee who had worked for UPS for almost 30 years, was terminated for an “integrity violation” involving the falsification of a driver’s timecard. In his lawsuit, King alleged that UPS had terminated him because he was diagnosed with a … Continue Reading

Fire Captain Who Lost His Leg Was Not Discriminated Against On Basis Of Disability

Malais v. Los Angeles City Fire Dep’t, 2007 WL 1229335 (Cal. Ct. App. 2007) Gregory Malais, a Captain II with the Los Angeles City Fire Department, sued the Department for disability discrimination in violation of the Fair Employment and Housing Act when he was given a special-duty assignment following the partial amputation of one of … Continue Reading

Employee Entitled To New Trial On Disability Claim

Gambini v. Total Renal Care, Inc., 2007 WL 686350 (9th Cir. Mar. 8, 2007) Stephanie Gambini sued her former employer, Total Renal Care, Inc., d/b/a DaVita, Inc., alleging that it had discriminated against her in violation of Washington state law prohibiting disability discrimination and the federal Family Medical Leave Act. Gambini was terminated from her … Continue Reading

UPS Violated ADA By Excluding Deaf Drivers Who Failed To Satisfy DOT Hearing Standard

Bates v. United Parcel Serv., 465 F.3d 1069 (9th Cir. 2006) One of the requirements applied by UPS to those applicants seeking to drive the familiar brown “package cars” was that they pass the physical examination (including a hearing exam) that the DOT requires of drivers of commercial vehicles of a gross vehicle weight rating … Continue Reading

Disability Harassment Judgment Reversed, $15 Million Punitive Damages Award Reduced

Roby v. McKesson HBOC, 2006 WL 3775897 (Cal. Ct. App. Dec. 26, 2006) After doing a “stellar” job for 25 years and working as a customer service support liaison for McKesson, Charlene Roby developed a panic disorder and began missing substantial amounts of time from work. McKesson fired Roby for abusing its attendance policy, though … Continue Reading

Trial Court Should Have Considered Parties’ “Respective Resources” Before Assessing Certain Costs Against Non-Prevailing Employee

Seever v. Copley Press, Inc., 141 Cal. App. 4th 1550 (2006) Michael Seever worked as a building superintendent for The Daily Breeze (owned by Copley) before the company instituted a reduction in force that resulted in the elimination of 18 positions, including Seever’s. Seever alleged discrimination on the basis of a disability (he had tripped … Continue Reading

Neither Unruh Civil Rights Act Nor Disabled Persons Act Prohibits Employment Discrimination

Bass v. County of Butte, 2006 WL 2348467 (9th Cir. 2006) Allison Bass and two co-workers asserted employment discrimination claims against the County of Butte based upon the county’s alleged failure to accommodate their work-related disabilities. Plaintiffs alleged violation of the Unruh Civil Rights Act and the Disabled Persons Act on the theory that the … Continue Reading

Epileptic Heavy-Equipment Operator May Have Been Discriminated Against On Basis Of Disability

Dark v. Curry County, 451 F.3d 1078 (9th Cir. 2006) Robert Dark, an epileptic since the age of 16, worked as a maintenance and construction worker for Curry County, Oregon for approximately 16 years. Among other things, Dark operated heavy equipment such as construction vehicles for the County. On the morning of January 15, 2002, … Continue Reading

Employee With Criminal And Mental Hospitalization Record Was Victim Of Disability Discrimination

Josephs v. Pacific Bell, 432 F.3d 1006 (9th Cir. 2005) Joshua Liam Josephs, a former Pacific Bell service technician, sued PacBell for mental disability discrimination in violation of the ADA and the California Fair Employment and Housing Act. PacBell hired Josephs after he checked “No” to a question on his employment application asking whether he … Continue Reading

Employee With Depression And Bipolar Disorder Could Proceed With Disability Discrimination Claims

Head v. Glacier Northwest, Inc., 413 F.3d 1053 (9th Cir. 2005) Matthew Head, a barge offloader, sued his former employer, Glacier Northwest, Inc., for discrimination in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Oregon state law. Glacier contended it terminated Head because he had damaged one of its loaders when it got stuck … Continue Reading

Employer Was Liable For Discriminating Against Employee Who Filed Workers’ Compensation Claim

Crown Appliance v. WCAB, 115 Cal. App. 4th 620 (2004) Crown Appliance petitioned the Court of Appeal for a writ of review, following a determination by the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board (WCAB) that Crown had discriminated against its employee, Morton Wong, for filing a workers’ compensation claim. Wong sustained an industrial injury to his left … Continue Reading

Employer Did Not Discriminate By Requiring Injured Employee To Use Vacation and Sick Leave Benefits

State of Cal. Dep’t of Rehabilitation v. WCAB, 30 Cal. 4th 1281 (2003) Ronald Lauher worked as a rehabilitation counselor for the California Department of Rehabilitation for 25 years before submitting a claim for workers’ compensation benefits based on work-related stress and depression. After Lauher was diagnosed with Gerstmann’s Syndrome (a brain lesion that causes … Continue Reading

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