Pittsburgh Set to Resolve Disability Suit with Fire Lieutenant for $70k

The City Council of Pittsburgh has introduced a resolution to settle a disability discrimination lawsuit brought in 2018 by a fire lieutenant who suffers from epilepsy.

Lieutenant Robert Mahouski sued under the Americans With Disabilities Act claiming the city wrongfully refused to allow him to return to full duty after he slipped and fell down stairs while responding to the call on May 12, 2016.  Lt. Mahouski suffered head injuries in the fall, and was unable to return to duty until July 7, 2016.

The suit accused the city of attributing his fall to a medical condition, juvenile myoclonic epilepsy, and blocking his return to full duty. The city sought to have the suit dismissed, but a federal court concluded that Lt. Mahouski had adequately alleged a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more of the major life activities and that the case could proceed.

The council will now consider paying Lt. Mahouski $70,000 to resolve the matter. He was returned to full duty on April 16, 2018. More on the story.

About Curt Varone

Curt Varone has over 40 years of fire service experience and 30 as a practicing attorney licensed in both Rhode Island and Maine. His background includes 29 years as a career firefighter in Providence (retiring as a Deputy Assistant Chief), as well as volunteer and paid on call experience. He is the author of two books: Legal Considerations for Fire and Emergency Services, (2006, 2nd ed. 2011, 3rd ed. 2014) and Fire Officer's Legal Handbook (2007), and is a contributing editor for Firehouse Magazine writing the Fire Law column.

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