Wisconsin workers who suffer from a temporary impairment may be covered under the Americans with Disabilities Act. A recent ruling in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit upheld an injured worker's wrongful termination claim. Although the claimant was not permanently disabled, he was unable to walk normally for seven months following an injury. Two months after suffering from the injury, the worker was fired from Altarum Institute where he was employed as a senior analyst.
Although the man attempted to discuss a plan to work from home with his supervisors, Altarum never responded to his proposals. The man was instead provided with short-term disability payments before being terminated and replaced by another analyst. After a district court dismissed the man's wrongful termination claim, the U.S. Court of Appeals determined that the court had failed to uphold the ADA Amendments Act, or ADAAA. According to the ADAAA, a person may be considered disabled if their short-term impairment is sufficiently severe.
Other individuals who have been terminated by their employer following an injury may be able to file a similar wrongful termination claim. An attorney may be able to assist individuals in building a claim by gathering evidence that proves the injury they sustained resulted in temporary impairment.
Source: Bloomberg BNA, "Temporary Impairment May Be ‘Disability' Under Amended ADA, Fourth Circuit Rules", Kevin P. McGowan, January 27, 2014