Evan Spelfogel Quoted in “Vanguard Hit With Suit Over Ex-Employee’s Dyslexia”


Evan Spelfogel, a Member of the Firm in the Labor and Employment and Employee Benefits practices, in the New York office, was quoted in an article titled "Vanguard Hit With Suit Over Ex-Employee's Dyslexia."

Following is an excerpt:

A former Vanguard employee has sued the firm for allegedly violating the Americans with Disabilities Act by not providing accommodations for his dyslexia.

Stephen Kennard, hired by Vanguard in 1999 and employed in investor relations, alleges in the complaint that issues related to his dyslexia first surfaced in 2003, when a supervisor told him his calls were not satisfactory because of his speed in relaying information.

After moving to another department within investor relations, the plaintiff says he received raises and good performance reviews.

Then in 2012, another supervisor told Kennard he took too long to explain services on the phone. He was put on probation and human resources recommended that he see a psychologist through the employee benefit program in order to address his dyslexia and improve his performance, according to the complaint.

But when he presented the psychologist's recommendations for accommodations for his disability to human resources, they were not implemented.

The firm fired him in March 2013 for failing to address the problems, the plaintiff alleges. ?...

Another potential issue for the plaintiff is that the complaint does not state that he first filed his discrimination claims with the EEOC or a comparable state agency to investigate them, as required under the law, says Evan Spelfogel, partner at Epstein Becker Green.

It is possible that the plaintiff did take the appropriate procedural steps, but failed to include this in his complaint, adds Spelfogel.