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When asked how the Americans With Disabilities Act is doing, practitioners often say, “Isn’t it dead?” In light of last year’s U.S. Supreme Court Burlington decision on workplace retaliation, employers, employees and lawyers may soon find that the ADA is indeed alive and well.

On Monday at 8 p.m. on WFMZ-TV 69, Christopher Naughton’s American Law Journal presents “New Developments Under the ADA – the Impact of Retaliation.” Corporate counsel Anthony Haller of Blank Rome, claimant’s lawyer Kevin Lovitz of the Lovitz Law Firm, in-house counsel John Bogan of AstraZeneca and chief counsel Michael Hardiman of the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission look at the ADA 17 years on.

“The ADA itself is disabled,” said Lovitz. “When you look back to where Congress set out to be, I think we are far from that concept. [B]ut lawyers need to jog left and right. . . . They need to adapt to the way the law has evolved in the last 10 years.”

“I think one of the interesting developments,” said Haller, “is that the courts view an [employee] request for accommodation as ‘protected activity.’ But it’s the basis [for] which you can bring a retaliation claim. And if you bring a retaliation claim, everything washes out. . . . You don’t have to prove you were disabled. I think despite Congress’ efforts I think you’re going to see there is a huge area for plaintiffs to litigate [under] the ADA. And you will see these cases filed, . . . leading to the potential of much higher verdicts than we’ve seen to date.”

The American Law Journal broadcasts for one hour every Monday night at 8 on WFMZ-TV 69 and is free on demand at www.LawJournalTV.com. Next week: “High-Profile Divorce.”

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