KAREN SHIELDS V. CREDIT ONE BANK, N.A., No. 20-15647 (9th Cir. 2022)Annotate this Case
Plaintiff alleged that her former employer violated the ADA by failing to accommodate her disability and instead terminating her from her human resources job after she underwent a bone biopsy surgery on her right shoulder and arm. The district court concluded that Plaintiff failed to plead a “disability” because she did not adequately allege that she had “a physical or mental impairment that substantially limit[ed] one or more major life activities.”
The Ninth Circuit reversed the district court’s dismissal of Plaintiff’s employment discrimination action. The court concluded that Plaintiff pleaded facts plausibly establishing that she had a physical impairment both during an immediate post-surgical period and during an extension period in which her surgeon concluded that her injuries had not sufficiently healed to permit her to return to work. The court also found that the activities that Plaintiff pleaded she was unable to perform qualified as “major life activities,” which included caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, lifting, and working. Finally, the complaint adequately alleged that Plaintiff’s impairment substantially limited her ability to perform at least one major life activity.