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United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
May 8, 2013, Decided
[*1307] JORDAN, Circuit Judge:
On the recommendation of an independent psychologist, Coca-Cola placed Franklin Owusu-Ansah, one of its employees, on paid leave and required him to undergo a psychiatric/psychological fitness-for-duty evaluation. After he was cleared to return to work, Mr. Owusu-Ansah sued Coca-Cola, alleging that the evaluation violated 42 U.S.C. § 12112(d)(4)(A), a provision of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The district court granted Coca-Cola's motion for summary judgment, concluding that the evaluation was both job-related and consistent with business necessity, and therefore permissible under the ADA.
Mr. Owusu-Ansah now appeals. Following review of the record, [**2] and with the benefit of oral argument, we affirm.
] We exercise plenary review of the district court's grant of summary judgment on Mr. Owusu-Ansah's ADA claim. See Holly v. Clairson Indus., L.L.C., 492 F.3d 1247, 1255 (11th Cir. 2007). ] "Summary judgment is appropriate when the evidence, viewed in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party, presents no genuine issue of material fact and compels judgment as a matter of law in favor of the moving party." Brown v. Sec'y of State of [*1308] Fla., 668 F.3d 1271, 1274 (11th Cir. 2012) (internal quotation marks omitted). Accord Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322-23, 106 S. Ct. 2548, 91 L. Ed. 2d 265 (1986).
As noted above, we would normally look at all of the record evidence in the light most favorable to Mr. Owusu-Ansah. But this is not a typical summary judgment case. The magistrate judge issued a report recommending that summary judgment be entered in favor of Coca-Cola. In so doing, the magistrate judge laid out the relevant facts, as he found them to exist, viewed through the prism of Rule 56. Mr. Owusu-Ansah asserts on appeal that the magistrate judge did not view the evidence in the light most favorable to him, improperly allowed hearsay evidence, and failed to consider [**3] certain evidence. Mr. Owusu-Ansah, however, did not file any objections to the magistrate judge's recitation of the evidence for Rule 56 purposes, and under our precedent, that failure to object means that we review the facts laid out by the magistrate judge only for plain error or manifest injustice. See, e.g., LoConte v. Dugger, 847 F.2d 745, 749-50 (11th Cir. 1988) (] "Findings of fact made by a United States magistrate under the authority of 28 U.S.C. § 636, and which are accepted and adopted by the district court without objection by any party, may be reviewed on direct appeal only for plain error or manifest injustice.") (internal quotation marks omitted); United States v. Hall, 716 F.2d 826, 829 (11th Cir. 1983) (defendant who failed to object to magistrate judge's report and recommendation could "challenge the district court's findings of fact [taken from the report] only under a plain error standard").1
Mr. Owusu-Ansah has not even attempted to meet the exacting plain error/manifest injustice standard, so we take the facts, for Rule 56 purposes, as set out in the magistrate judge's report and do not consider other evidence which might have, according to Mr. Owusu-Ansah, created issues of material fact. Nevertheless, ] we review de novo the magistrate judge's conclusions of law if they were accepted and adopted by the district court. See Monroe v. Thigpen, 932 F.2d 1437, 1440 (11th Cir. 1991).
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715 F.3d 1306 *; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 9340 **; 27 Am. Disabilities Cas. (BNA) 1583; 24 Fla. L. Weekly Fed. C 264; 15 Accom. Disabilities Dec. (CCH) P15-180; 2013 WL 1896978
FRANKLIN OWUSU-ANSAH, Plaintiff-Appellant, versus THE COCA-COLA COMPANY, Defendant-Appellee.
Subsequent History: US Supreme Court certiorari denied by Owusu-Ansah v. Coca-Cola Co., 571 U.S. 1045, 134 S. Ct. 655, 187 L. Ed. 2d 449, 2013 U.S. LEXIS 8243 (Nov. 18, 2013)
Prior History: [**1] Appeal from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia. D.C. Docket No. 1:09-cv-02664-SCJ.
Owusu-Ansah v. Coca-Cola Co., 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 160028 (N.D. Ga., July 8, 2011)
disability, business necessity, recommended, workplace, employees, summary judgment, psychological, job-related, psychiatric, medical examination, fitness-for-duty, undergo, objective evidence
Civil Procedure, Appeals, Summary Judgment Review, Standards of Review, Labor & Employment Law, Discrimination, Disability Discrimination, General Overview, Summary Judgment, Entitlement as Matter of Law, Appropriateness, Judicial Officers, Magistrates, Objections, Reviewability of Lower Court Decisions, Preservation for Review, Standards of Review, De Novo Review, Defenses, Business Necessity, Employment Practices, Medical Inquiries, Scope & Definitions, Governments, Legislation, Interpretation, Administrative Law, Judicial Review, Deference to Agency Statutory Interpretation, Direct Threats