CHARLESTON — A woman alleges Rotech Healthcare failed to accommodate her disability and violated the West Virginia Human Rights Act.
Valarie D. Taylor filed the lawsuit against Rotech and Samantha Bowen, who was another employee of Rotech, according to a complaint filed in Kanawha Circuit Court.
Taylor claims she fractured her ankle in August 2017 at home and was on medical leave from her employment until Jan. 25, 2018, when she returned to work.
The plaintiff had to have a second surgery on her ankle on April 19, 2018, and she used her vacation time for recovery, according to the suit.
Taylor claims when she was released to return to work, she e-mailed her work release restrictions to the defendant, which were that she could not lift, push, pull, climb or walk long distances, which meant she could not retrieve medical equipment for customers.
The defendant refused to provide her with the accommodation and, instead, terminated her employment immediately, according to the suit.
Taylor claims the defendants violated the West Virginia Human Rights Act by refusing to accommodate her disability, which caused her to suffer damages.
The plaintiff suffered a loss of indignity, humiliation, embarrassment, emotional distress, aggravation and embarrassment, according to the suit.
Taylor claims the defendants' actions were willful and wanton and caused her damages. She claims she asked for reasonable accommodation and that the defendant knew or should have known that she needed the accommodation during her healing.
"Defendants failed to engage in the interactive process with Plaintiff upon receiving her request for an accommodation," the complaint states.
Taylor is seeking compensatory and punitive damages with pre- and post-judgment interest. She is represented by Rodney A. Smith and Todd S. Bailess of Bailess Smith in Charleston.
The case is assigned to Circuit Judge Carrie Webster.
Kanawha Circuit Court Case number: 19-C-1083