Thank You For Submiting Feedback!
United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
June 16, 2022, Submitted; November 16, 2022, Filed
[*454] MENENDEZ, District Judge.
Appellant Mobley appeals the District Court's2 grant of summary judgment in favor of Appellee St. Luke's Health System, Inc. ("St. Luke's"). For the following reasons, we affirm.
Joseph Mobley worked in customer service for St. Luke's3 for more than six years, beginning in 2012. During his tenure, Mobley received two promotions, most recently in 2016, when he was named Patient Access Supervisor. In that role, Mobley was responsible for training and managing a team of approximately 20 employees to assist patients over the phone in verifying insurance coverage and determining out-of-pocket healthcare costs. Most of Mobley's direct-reports [**2] telecommuted full time, although the lowest-performing members on Mobley's team worked in the office. St. Luke's policy allowed managers to telecommute one day a week, and, as of 2018, two days per week. Mobley's manager, Jessica Lillard, allowed her direct-reports additional teleworking days on a case-by-case basis.
In 2016, Mobley was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis ("MS"). As his MS progressed, Mobley began to have difficulty walking, standing, and breathing, and experienced fatigue and burning sensations in his eyes and hands, particularly when his MS flared. At times, St. Luke's management team observed Mobley's mobility challenges around the office. Mobley's neurologist encouraged him to continue working, even when his condition flared.
Mobley first requested an accommodation in December 2017, when he asked Lillard if he could telecommute when his MS flared. Lillard indicated that she would consider it and work with Mobley as the need arose. The following month, however, Lillard denied that accommodation, explaining [*455] to Mobley that allowing him to telecommute during a flare-up would be unfair to his co-supervisor. Instead, St. Luke's suggested that Mobley use paid time off and [**3] Family Medical Leave Act leave on those occasions.
In February 2018, Mobley again asked for permission to telecommute when his condition flared and supplied St. Luke's a letter from his neurologist recommending as much. Subsequently, in March 2018, Lillard and St. Luke's human-resources representative met with Mobley, and he renewed his request to telecommute when he experienced a flare-up of his MS. St. Luke's denied the request, instructing Mobley that he could ask Lillard on a case-by-case basis to work from home during a flare-up. Lillard advised that St. Luke's could not accommodate his request because he needed to supervise direct-reports in the office and because his flare-ups were unpredictable. Mobley asked Lillard to reconsider the decision, but she refused to do so. Despite this refusal, Mobley recalled only one instance when Lillard denied a request to telework during a flare-up and required him to take time off instead.
Full case includes Shepard's, Headnotes, Legal Analytics from Lex Machina, and more.
53 F.4th 452 *; 2022 U.S. App. LEXIS 31585 **
Joseph Mobley, Plaintiff - Appellant v. St. Luke's Health System, Inc., Defendant - Appellee
Prior History: [**1] Appeal from United States District Court for the Western District of Missouri - Kansas City.
Mobley v. St. Luke's Health Sys., 2021 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 124718, 2021 WL 2665455 (W.D. Mo., June 1, 2021)
accommodation, summary judgment, disability, functions, telework, flare-up, telecommute, flared, reasonable accommodation, district court, interactive process
Civil Procedure, Summary Judgment, Entitlement as Matter of Law, Appropriateness, Judgments, Entitlement as Matter of Law, Appellate Review, Standards of Review, Legal Entitlement, Genuine Disputes, Business & Corporate Compliance, Disability Discrimination, Scope & Definitions, Discriminatory Conduct, Labor & Employment Law, Employment Practices, Demotions & Promotions, Discrimination, Federal & State Interrelationships, Disabilities Under ADA, Mental & Physical Impairments, Major Life Activities, Records of Impairments, Qualified Individuals With Disabilities, Reasonable Accommodations, Interactive Process, Burdens of Proof