A Harris County woman is suing over claims her employer revoked her health insurance and then refused to rehire her after placing her on indefinite leave during a high-risk pregnancy.
Amanda Loring filed a lawsuit Oct. 29 in the Houston Division of the Southern District of Texas against Aquatic Care Programs Inc., citing employment discrimination.
According to the complaint, Loring is a licensed physical therapy assistant who has worked for Aquatic, which uses a mixture of dry land and pool therapy to rehabilitate patients, since Dec. 6, 2010. Loring says that in April 2013, she informed her supervisor, Trisha Biasotti, that she was pregnant and her pregnancy had been classified as "high risk," which would require frequent doctor's visits and potentially work restrictions at some point.
The complaint states Biasotti began taking actions designed to force Loring from her employment, including demanding that Loring immediately take a part-time position or quit, even though Loring had not been placed on restrictions at the time. Loring says that when she refused, Biasotti cut her weekly hours to 25 from 40, which resulted in the company revoking Loring's health insurance at the time she needed it most, as she was facing a high-risk pregnancy.
The lawsuit states that in July 2013, Loring was briefly hospitalized, after which she met with Biasotti to discuss modified work duties her physician requested for the remainder of her pregnancy. Loring says Biasotti refused to accommodate the work restrictions and told her she couldn't return to work until she had no disability, resulting in Loring being placed on indefinite leave with no compensation or health insurance.
The complaint states Loring was told this was temporary but Aquatic has failed to rehire her since the pregnancy. Aquatic is accused of discrimination against disability in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act, and violating the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Pregnancy Discrimination Act.
Loring seeks compensatory and punitive damages, including front pay, back pay and attorney fees. She is represented by attorney M. Kevin Powers of Porter & Powers in Houston.
Houston Division of the Southern District of Texas case number: 4:14-CV-03097