Smothers v. Solvay Chemicals Inc., No. 12-8013 (10th Cir. 2014)Annotate this Case
Plaintiff-Appellant Steven Smothers sued his former employer Solvay Chemical, Inc. for alleged discrimination against him on the basis of his medical disability in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act. He worked eighteen years until Solvay fired him, allegedly because of a safety violation and dispute with a co-worker. Plaintiff maintained the company's true motivation was retaliation for his taking medical leave. The district court granted Solvay summary judgment on plaintiff's FMLA and ADA claims and on his state law claim for breach of implied contract. It dismissed the remaining state law claims as moot based on its resolution of plaintiff's breach of contract claim. Upon careful consideration of the facts of this case, the Tenth Circuit reversed the district court on the FMLA and ADA claims, and affirmed on the state law breach of contract claim.