Stressed out commute leads to lawsuit - My9 New Jersey

Stressed out commute leads to lawsuit

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We all spend most of our day chasing stories and fighting traffic throughout New Jersey so we were interested in a lawsuit filed by a Berlin woman who said that traffic caused her so much stress that she needed her employer to change her work schedule so she didn’t have to drive during rush hour.

Andrea DeGarolamo went out on disability because of depression. When she returned she asked her employer, Fulton Financial, to allow her to arrive late and leave early so she could avoid traffic. The company agreed.

But, Fulton Financial changed DeGarolamo’s responsibilities without discussing it with her. DeGarolamo’s attorney says that’s discriminating against illness.

“I think that what we’re doing is opening the door for a floodgate of more frivolous lawsuits,” said Attorney Tarqi El Shabazz who does not represent DeGarolamo nor Fulton Financial.

But therapist Dr. Argie Allen takes a different approach saying a regular nuisance may be a legit medical issue.

“For this person who may find themselves in traffic…they may find themselves in a state of anxiety on a regular basis,” said Allen.

DeGarolamo is seeking financial damages while most of the country is probably waiting to see if traffic induced stress is a legitimate reason to demand reduced or more flexible work hours.

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