EEOC: Requiring Old Medical Documentation Violated ADA

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has charged a Clearwater, Fla., company with violating the Americans With Disabilities Act by firing an engineer because he did not produce medical documentation for an old medical condition.

According to the complaint filed in the U.S. District Cout for the Middle District of Florida, American Tool & Mold, which designs and  manufactures injection molds for plastics, terminated Michael Matanic because he did not provide a  medical release relating to a six-year-old successful back surgery.

In so doing, the EEOC alleges, the company fired Matanic because it regarded as having a disability.

According to the EEOC’s suit, at the time of his termination, Matanic was  in good health and had a recent medical examination showing no physical  limitations on his ability to perform his job as a process engineer.

The EEOC further charged that Matanic actually  per­formed his job with American Tool and Mold for two months without incident  or injury while he attempted to obtain the outdated medical documentation that it  had required as part of its allegedly discriminatory post-offer medical  screening process.

The EEOC filed suit after first attempting to  reach a voluntary settlement out of court.

This blog post was highlighted in the Dec. 14 weekly roundup of the Ohio Employer Law Blog.


2 responses to this post.

  1. Since you posted this article, you may be interested in the response:

    Attorneys for American Tool & Mold, George Tragos and Peter Sartes, of the prominent Tampa Bay-based Law Offices of Tragos & Sartes, P.L. asked the U.S District Court in Tampa to dismiss a claim made by the Equal Employment Opportunities Commission on behalf of Michael Matanic, who worked as a process engineer at ATM in December 2009 and January 2010, as wholly without merit.

    Matanic was hired conditionally with the proviso that he undergo a routine medical examination required of all new employees. Lakeside Medical Center, the clinic hired by ATM to perform the examination, determined that it would be necessary for Mr. Matanic to either get a release from the surgeon who performed the operation or from an orthopedic surgeon or a local physician stating that Mr. Matanic had no permanent restrictions.

    ATM informed Matanic that they would waive the requirement for thirty days and allow him to work temporarily, because he had relocated from Texas to accept the position. He began work in November, 2009 but was informed that he would not be eligible for permanent hire until the required medical releases were received. In December, ATM advised Metanic that he could not continue to work without the release, but that they would give him an additional 30 days. Mr. Matanic’s employment was terminated in January 2010.

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