Oilfield Services Company Sued after Withdrawing Job Offer to Diabetic Applicant

August 01, 2016

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has filed a lawsuit against a Louisiana based company, asserting the oilfield services company violated the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by withdrawing a job offer to an applicant because of his diabetes. The Applicant, a Type I insulin-dependent diabetic, applied and interviewed for a service technician job. The Applicant received a job offer and informed the hiring manager that he would like to move forward with the process, which included taking a required drug test and physical examination.

During the subsequent physical examination, the doctor examining the Applicant determined that he was in "good physical shape" and that his diabetes was "well-controlled." The doctor also expressed concern that he had Type I insulin-dependent diabetes and wanted to work offshore. The Applicant, however, assured the doctor that he was on an insulin pump, that he had two years of previous experience working offshore as a diabetic without incident, and that he took necessary precautions to ensure his safety. After the examination, the doctor contacted the Company to relay that the applicant was a Type I insulin-dependent diabetic. The Company then contacted the Applicant and withdrew the job offer. The EEOC alleges that the Company did not base its decision to withdraw the job offer on the type of fact-intensive assessment mandated by the ADA. Rather, the Company simply revoked the offer based on a sweeping determination that Type I insulin-dependent diabetics could not work offshore, regardless of whether the particular diabetic employee could perform the essential functions of his job.