Former housekeeper alleges employment law violations

By Kasey Schefflin-Emrich | Jul 17, 2015

PHILADELPHIA A Philadelphia resident alleges that a real estate rental agency where he used to work violated numerous employment laws.

James McLaughlin filed a lawsuit July 2 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania against Aimco Properties, L.P. and Aimco-GP Inc., citing wrongful termination due to his age and disability.

According to the civil action, McLaughlin, 66, worked as a housekeeper at the defendant's Philadelphia location for approximately 12 years.

The suit states that during the time McLaughlin was employed he suffered from health conditions including a heart condition, considered a disability under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Although his disabilities prevented him from performing some activities such as manual tasks, he was still able to perform the duties required of his job with some reasonable accommodations such as taking time off under the Family and Medical Leave Act from August 2013 to October 2013 and then again in late-December 2013, he claims.

The complaint states that while McLaughlin was on the December 2013 approved medical leave, he learned that he was going to be replaced the following month and when he asked his employer why it was replacing him since he was planning to return to work after the medical leave, the defendants alleged that McLaughlin chose to retire and thought he resigned.

The filing states that prior to his medical leave in December, McLaughlin met with a supervisor whom he told that his doctor suggested he retire because of his medical conditions. However, at no point during that discussion did McLaughlin say he wanted to or was retiring from his job, he says.

Nonetheless, McLaughlin was terminated and replaced by a younger individual.

Thus, according to the lawsuit, McLaughlin claims he was terminated because of his age, his disabilities and as retaliation for requesting qualified medical leave.

The plaintiff seeks reinstatement; lost salary and benefits; back and front pay; punitive and liquidated damages; court costs and attorney fees; and other relief deemed appropriate by the court. He is represented by attorney Ari R. Karpf of Karpf, Karpf & Cerutti P.C. in Bensalem.

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania case number: 2:15-cv-03702-MMB.

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