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State worker settles disability discrimination suit with county

While readers of our blog are likely interested in hearing about local employment law stories, they also know that sometimes the best examples of abuses in the system come from other states. That’s because, they can see that these cases are not only happening across the nation but also how different states handle such similar employment law cases to those in Indiana.

We look at an example out of Maryland this week where a 71-year-old man fractured his hip on the job during a 2011 fall. Even though he recovered from his injuries during his available sick time, he was still terminated from his position. Feeling that this was disability discrimination, the man filed a discrimination lawsuit against the county, with whom he was employed, for violating the Americans with Disabilities Act, stating that it was because of this that his termination should be considered wrongful in nature.

The courts agreed recently and awarded him not only his job back but $143,000 in back pay and damages. For those readers who may be wondering, the courts also awarded him workers’ compensation benefits for his injuries, though no amount has been released at this time.

Just like in Maryland, Indiana employees should always feel like they have the right to seek legal representation, especially if they feel that their employer has violated state or federal laws. This goes for state and government workers as well because, after all, even political figures can get things wrong from time to time.

Although employment law cases such as this are not common place, that doesn’t mean they don’t happen in states across the nation, including here in Indiana. But when they do, those involved should never feel like they have to suffer the injustice of having their rights violated without appeal to the courts.

Source: The Baltimore Sun, "Balto. Co. settles disability discrimination lawsuit," Alison Knezevich, Aug. 7, 2013

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