Disability Law

Domino’s Pizza has filed a Petition for a Writ of Certiorari with the United States Supreme  Court challenging the Ninth Circuit’s recent ruling in favor of Guillermo Robles.* The Court’s decision on whether to grant certiorari will have a profound impact on the possible “tsunami”** of website accessibility lawsuits, but we don’t have to wait for that decision to find the Petition itself interesting. What I find most intriguing is Domino’s argument that the Ninth…
STEP 1:Start with reality: your doctor does not want to get involved. Your doctor’s opinion on your ability to function in a work-like setting is very important, though it is not required.  But unfortunately most doctors do not want to get involved in helping you win your social security disability benefits.  Its not that they are bad people.  Doctors want to heal, and supporting a disability claim is an admission that they have failed.  Moreover,…
Disability Programs for Military Service Members Every year, on Memorial Day, we honor service members who have given their lives or been wounded for our freedom Both the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the Social Security Administration (SSA) have disability programs. Military service members and veterans may qualify for disability benefits through one of these programs but not the other, or they may qualify for both. The Social Security Administration (SSA) offers benefits…
I’ve observed before that titles II and III of the ADA create what can be called a crime looking for a victim.* The decision in Hamer v. City of Trinidad, 2019 WL 2120132 (10th Cir. May 15, 2019) shows how defining the crime can change the burden cities may face today based on decisions that go back decades or even centuries.  The decision in Hamer will allow almost any person with a disability to demand that every…
It can be one of the hardest decisions in life.  A physical or mental illness is limiting your life, including the ability to work and make a living.  Many eventually come to ask these questions: “Should I file a claim for social security disability?” “Will I qualify for social security disability?” These can feel like very difficult questions to answer.  No one plans for or expects illness or injury in life that effects their ability…
On Tuesday, June 4 Judge Katherine Failla of the Southern District of New York issued a critical decision finding that a website accessibility case could be mooted by simply fixing the website. Diaz v. Kroger Co., Case No. 1:18-cv-7953 (June 4, 2019). She also found that Kroger was not subject to personal jurisdiction in New York on more conventional grounds, but the mootness holding is critical. As is often the case in mootness decisions the facts…
J.D. v. Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, Case No. 18-1725 (4th Circuit,  May 31, 2019) to my attention. For those interested in the parameters of the ADA’s requirement that public accommodations modify their rules for the disabled the case has a thorough discussion of the basic case law. What I find more interesting is the Court’s failure to address its imposition of a double standard in dealing with modification requests. It seems that for businesses it is…
We are often asked by parents if it is possible to protect an inheritance for an adult child who battles Bipolar Disorder.  Unfortunately, one of the hallmarks of the disorder is excessive financial spending while in the mania phase of the disease.  Parents often worry that if they leave an inheritance outright to their adult child that it will be lost or squandered quickly and that mom or dad will no longer be around to…
My colleague William Goren recently shared with me some correspondence with an internet service for attorneys that was offering a free webinar. Bill is deaf and was inquiring about captioning for the webinar. The response was that the service through which the webinar was offered didn’t offer captioning. I had looked at the same issue myself a few years ago in an effort to make my own webinars more accessible. What I found was that…
I have long been interested in the ADA and how it applies to sports. In the very first edition of my book in 2000, I talked about the hypothetical of what would happen if Sean Elliott, who underwent a kidney transplant from his brother in 1999, was given grief when he returned to professional  basketball. For those of us who don’t know about Sean Elliott, he had an absolutely fabulous career at the University of…