Parada v. Banco Industrial De Venezuela

U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit
Employment

New York Law Journal

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Parada sustained a spinal injury in 2007, six months into her employment with Banco Industrial de Venezuela (BIV). After repeated requests for an ergonomic chair went unanswered Parada took, and exhausted, paid leave of absence. Short-term disability benefits expired on Feb. 11, 2008. BIV terminated Parada's employment on May 1, 2008. BIV sought dismissal of Parada's March 2010 amended complaint asserting that BIV discriminated and retaliated against her in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by ignoring her requests for reasonable accommodation of her back injury and later firing her. District court granted BIV summary judgment on Parada's disability claim. Relying on Colwell v. Suffolk County Police Department, it held that Parada's inability to sit for a prolonged period of time could not constitute a disability under the ADA. Despite affirming judgment as to Parada's ADA retaliation claim and her claim under the Fair Labor Standards Act, Second Circuit vacated—and remanded—judgment with respect to her ADA discrimination claim. Discussing Colwell, the circuit clarified that the inability to sit for a prolonged period of time may be a disability depending on the totality of circumstances.

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