Florida advocates for disabled people have reason to be encouraged after a jury sided with a disabled man who sued Walmart for terminating his employment because of his disabilities. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed a suit against the company on his behalf for violating the Americans With Disabilities Act. The trial lasted three days and concluded with a jury award that ordered the employer to pay the man $200,000 in compensatory damages plus $5 million in punitive damages.
The man had worked for Walmart for 16 years. The company accommodated his needs by pairing him with a publicly-funded job coach until a new manager arrived and suspended his employment. The manager said that the man’s legal guardian had to provide new medical documentation about his disabilities. Although the guardian complied with this request, court filings from the EEOC indicated that the employer ceased communication and essentially ended his employment. The EEOC had initially tried to resolve the man’s complaint out of court, but a representative from Walmart described the agency’s demands as unreasonable.
Through a statement given to the media, Walmart explained that the manager terminated the man’s employment due to concerns about his ability to perform his work duties safely regardless of job accommodations. The company believes the verdict does not represent a reasonable interpretation of the facts and might consider appealing the case.
Someone dismissed from work without adequate explanation who suspects that discrimination motivated an employer could seek Boca Raton workplace disability discrimination law firm help. An attorney’s case evaluation might reveal violations of applicable law. Legal support might help an individual organize evidence and communicate a complaint to the EEOC. During negotiations or a trial, an attorney might confront the employer with facts about the person’s illegal treatment.