Agency Says Towing Company’s Medical Leave Policy Violates ADA

October 4, 2010 ( - United Road Towing is accused of violating federal anti-discrimination law by enforcing an “inflexible” medical leave policy.

In a lawsuit, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has charged that United Road Towing violated the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by failing to provide reasonable accommodations to qualified employees with disabilities who were on authorized medical leave, and instead terminated them after they used the full 12 weeks of leave allowed under Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA).  The agency also asserts that United Road Towing refused to re-hire employees with disabilities when those employees reapplied after being terminated under the company’s medical leave policy.    

EEOC Chicago Regional Attorney John Hendrickson said in a news release: “The issue in this lawsuit will be whether United Road Towing discriminated against employees with disabilities in administering an inflexible medical leave policy. The ADA mandates that employers engage in an interactive process with disabled employees to provide reasonable accommodations, and this mandate remained after the passage of the FMLA.  Companies must find a way to administer their medical leave policies without discriminating against employees with disabilities, as we allege United Road Towing failed to do.”  

The case is EEOC v. United Road Towing Inc., N.D. Ill. No. 10-cv-06259.  

Last year, the EEOC filed a similar lawsuit against United Parcel Service (UPS) over its medical leave policy (see EEOC Claims UPS Medical Leave Policy is Discriminatory).