01 Nov Court does it right
It is rare to hear of a case where the court ruled in favor of the basic precepts of the rule of law. Generally courts have a reputation for making their decisions based in the precepts of angry rejected college professors. A terrible situation which has driven the American voting population to elect a nuclear warhead as president, with directions to ‘tear that place down’.
Still, it’s nice to hear of a situation where a court actually ruled in favor of the rule of law.
So, what was the case?
Briefly, a company found that one of its employees had become completely paranoid, insisting that her coworkers were spying on her and that they were tracking her via GPS etc., etc., the whole shebang.
It got so bad that she couldn’t do her job anymore, so the company ordered her to go see a doctor before she could return to work.
She sued, claiming that she was being discriminated against as a disabled.
Fortunately, the court found that she had no case, that the company had enough good cause to send her to a doctor and order her to undergo the treatment which the doctor recommended.
In order to come to this finding, however, they court first had to find that being concerned for another’s wellbeing wasn’t discrimination.
Here is the courts language:
Monroe’s unusual behavior, including the nature of allegations against her co-workers in her internal complaint, coupled with performance issues would have caused any reasonable employer to inquire as to whether she was still capable of effectively doing her job … Consumers Energy had a reasonable basis for referring Monroe for an IME to evaluate whether her actions could have been undermining her ability to effectively do her job. Because Monroe cannot show that her IME referral was done for invalid reasons, she cannot establish that it was an adverse employment action or was discriminatory
IME refers to an ‘independent medical exam’, or a thorough check by a good doctor.
We can’t always count on a good court, however, so always be sure to run a background check on all of your employees.