United States District Court, W.D. Kentucky, Louisville Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
J. HALE, JUDGE
Amy Sherrard suffers from multiple impairments due to an
automobile accident in which she incurred a traumatic brain
injury. (Docket No. 1, PageID # 3) Nearly ten years after the
accident, Sherrard began working as an administrative
assistant for Defendant City of Vine Grove, Kentucky. (D.N.
1, PageID # 3; D.N. 22-5, PageID # 282-83) Following a
disagreement with her supervisor, Sherrard resigned. (D.N.
22-5, PageID # 283-84) She brought this action alleging that
Vine Grove violated the Americans with Disabilities Act and
the Kentucky Civil Rights Act by failing to accommodate her
alleged disabilities. (D.N. 1, PageID # 6-7) Vine Grove moves
for summary judgment, arguing that Sherrard has not shown she
is disabled within the meaning of the ADA or KCRA. (D.N. 22)
After careful consideration, the Court will grant Vine
1997, Sherrard was involved in an automobile accident in
which she sustained a traumatic brain injury (TBI). (D.N. 1,
PageID # 3) Because of her TBI, Sherrard is sensitive to
fluorescent lights, struggles with short-term memory loss,
and has trouble expressing herself. (Id.) She was
also diagnosed with attention deficit disorder in 2016, which
makes it difficult for her to concentrate and stay on task.
the accident, Sherrard obtained an associate's degree,
with high distinction, from Elizabethtown Community &
Technical College. (D.N. 22-5, PageID # 283) She also
achieved financial, basic business, and general business
certificates from the school. (Id.) During this
time, she worked as an accounting assistant at Communicare,
where she performed bookkeeping and audit-review duties-just
as she had prior to the accident. (Id.) In 2007,
Sherrard left Communicare due to a disagreement with the
management. (D.N. 22-2, PageID # 119-20)
leaving Communicare, Sherrard performed administrative and
accounting work for various employers and was eventually
hired as an administrative assistant for Vine Grove in
January 2016. (D.N. 1, PageID # 3; D.N. 22-5, PageID #
282-83) Once hired by Vine Grove, Sherrard allegedly told her
supervisor, Jackie Johnson, about her impairments and need
for accommodations. (D.N. 1, PageID # 3-4) Sherrard contends
that the accommodations were never provided, making it
difficult for her to complete her work during normal business
hours. (Id.) Sherrard thus asked to work overtime,
which resulted in a dispute between Johnson and Sherrard and,
eventually, Sherrard's resignation in August 2016.
(Id., PageID # 5-6; D.N. 22-11, PageID # 296)
then filed this action, alleging violations of the Americans
with Disabilities Act and Kentucky Civil Rights Act. (D.N. 1)
Specifically, Sherrard contends that Vine Grove violated her
rights under the Acts by failing to accommodate her
disability and subjecting her to less favorable terms and
conditions of employment due to her disability.
(Id., PageID # 6-7) Vine Grove seeks summary
judgment. (D.N. 22-1) It argues, among other things, that
Sherrard failed to prove she has a disability. (Id.,
PageID # 73)
judgment is proper “if the movant shows that there is
no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is
entitled to judgment as a matter of law.” Fed.R.Civ.P.
56(a). “[A] party seeking summary judgment always bears
the initial responsibility of informing the district court of
the basis for its motion, and identifying those portions of
[the record] which it believes demonstrate the absence of a
genuine issue of material fact.” Celotex Corp. v.
Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323 (1986) (internal citation
omitted); see also LaPointe v. United Autoworkers Local
600, 8 F.3d 376, 378 (6th Cir. 1993). The movant may do
so by merely showing that the nonmoving party lacks evidence
to support an essential element of her case for which she has
the burden of proof. See Celotex Corp., 477 U.S. at 323. The
moving party is not required to support its motion with
materials negating the opponent's claim. Id.
deciding a motion for summary judgment, “the court must
view the factual evidence and draw all reasonable inferences
in favor of the nonmoving party.” Banks v. Wolfe
Cty. Bd. of Educ., 330 F.3d 888, 892 (6th Cir. 2003)
(citing Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio
Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 587 (1986)). However, the mere
existence of a scintilla of evidence in support of the
nonmoving party's position will be insufficient; there
must be evidence upon which a jury could reasonably find for
the nonmoving party. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby,
Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 252 (1986). The nonmoving party
“must present some affirmative evidence supporting its
position to defeat an otherwise appropriate motion for
summary judgment.” Tucker v. Tennessee, 539
F.3d 526, 531 (6th Cir. 2008). If a plaintiff fails to
establish the existence of any element of her claim, there is
no genuine issue of material fact, and the moving party is
entitled to judgment as a matter of law. Celotex Corp., 477
U.S. at 323.
contends that Vine Grove failed to accommodate her disability
in violation of the ADA and KCRA. (D.N. 1, PageID # 1)
“Because the language of the KCRA mirrors that of its
federal counterpart, courts interpret the KCRA consistently
with federal anti-discrimination law.” Bryson v.
Regis Corp., 498 F.3d 561, 574 (6th Cir. 2007); see
Laferty v. United Parcel Service, Inc., 186
F.Supp.3d 702, 708 (W.D. Ky. 2016); Brown v. Humana Ins.
Co., 942 F.Supp.2d 723, 730 (W.D. Ky. 2013) (citing
Howard Baer, Inc. v. Schave, 127 S.W.3d 589, 592
(Ky. 2003)). Accordingly, the Court will analyze both of
Sherrard's claims simultaneously under the ADA framework.
See Bryson, 498 F.3d at 574.
establish a prima facie case under the ADA, a plaintiff must
show that she is disabled within the meaning of the Act; she
is otherwise qualified for the position; her employer knew or
had reason to know of her disability; she requested
accommodations; and the employer did not provide the
necessary accommodations. Myers v. Cuyahoga Cty.,
Ohio, 182 Fed.Appx. 510, 515 (6th Cir. 2006). A
disability is any physical or mental impairment that
substantially limits one or more major life activities. 42
U.S.C. § 12102. Merely having an impairment does not
make one disabled under the ADA. Bryson, 498 F.3d at 574.
substantial limitation exists where one is “unable to
perform a major life activity that the average person in the
general population can perform” or “significantly
restricted as to the condition, manner or duration”
they can perform a major life activity, compared to an
average person. Bryson, 498 F.3d at 575 (citing Toyota
Motor Mfg., Ky., Inc. v. Williams,534 U.S. 184, 195-96
(2002)). Moderate or intermittent ...