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The U.S. Supreme Court will not consider an appellate court ruling that said employers are not obligated to provide indefinite leave under the American with Disabilities Act.
The high court denied certiorari on Monday to a ruling by the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago in Raymond Severson v. Heartland Woodcraft Inc.
The ruling, which was hailed as a relief to employers within the court’s jurisdiction, does not comply with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity’s position, and disagrees with other courts. Many believed it would ultimately be considered by the U.S. Supreme Court.
“The ADA is an antidiscrimination statute, not a medical leave entitlement,” says the Sept. 20 ruling, which involves a worker who sought additional leave beyond the 12 weeks available under the Family and Medical Leave Act to recover from back surgery. “A long-term leave of absence cannot be a reasonable accommodation.”
A bill that passed the U.S. House of Representatives earlier this month addresses businesses’ vulnerability to the numerous so-called “drive-by” lawsuits filed by plaintiffs charging violations of Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act, which are often based on minor architectural issues.