Goldstein, Ackerhalt & Pletcher
70 Niagara Street, Suite 200 Buffalo , New York, 14202
Phone: 716-362-1533
Fax: 716-362-1534

The GAP Attorneys Blog

Meeting the needs of people with disabilities, their families, educators & service providers

Posts Tagged ‘Damages’

School’s failure to address bullying permits suit for damages

Monday, August 12th, 2013

M.J.  v. Marion Independent School District, 61 IDELR 76 (W.D. Tex. 2013): A federal district court allowed the parents of a student with bipolar disorder and ADHD to seek damages from a school district which failed to adequately address disability-based bullying.  The court concluded that, under Section 504, a school may be liable for failing to remedy disability-based peer-on-peer harassment.  Accordingly, the suit was permitted to proceed to resolve a genuine dispute as to whether the school acted with deliberate indifference or gross misjudgment when the student notified it of instances of harassment.

Tags: , , , , , , ,
Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on School’s failure to address bullying permits suit for damages

School district’s failure to discuss natural setting at IEP team meeting gives parent claim for damages

Monday, July 22nd, 2013

Luo v. Baldwin Union Free School District, 60 IDELR 281 (E.D.N.Y. 2013): A federal district court allowed a parent of a student with an autism spectrum disorder to pursue claims for damages based on IDEA violations.  The parent claimed that he had requested his son be placed in a “natural setting environment,” but that the student’s IEP team failed to discuss or present any information about such a possibility.  The parent further alleged that he was unable to pursue his grievances through an impartial hearing due, in part, to malfeasance by school district officials.  The Court (following precedent within that Circuit) allowed the parent to assert claims for damages, brought under Section 1983 of the Civil Rights Act, to proceed based on allegations of procedural violations of the IDEA.  The Court did note, however, that it was construing the parent’s allegations liberally at this particular stage in the proceedings.

Tags: , , , ,
Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on School district’s failure to discuss natural setting at IEP team meeting gives parent claim for damages

Parents must exhaust IDEA administrative process before bringing a suit for damages relating to bullying of a student with a disability.

Thursday, October 4th, 2012

Wright v. Carroll County Board of Education, 59 IDELR 5 (D. Md. 2012):  A U.S. District Court dismissed parents’ suit for damages stemming from alleged bullying of a student with autism.  The Court held the parents are required to exhaust the administrative remedies available under the IDEA.

The parents sought to be excused from the exhaustion requirement by claiming that such remedies were futile.  They argued that since the IDEA provides no specific protection to victims of violations school disciplinary rules (e.g. – bullying victims), the administrative process could not suitably address claims for money damages for such victims.  The Court disagreed, and dismissed the parents’ claims under the IDEA and Section 504 for failing to exhaust their administrative remedies.

Tags: , , , , ,
Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Parents must exhaust IDEA administrative process before bringing a suit for damages relating to bullying of a student with a disability.

Student may use Section 504 to sue for money damages for her misidentification as disabled.

Monday, July 30th, 2012

A.G. v. Lower Merion School District, 58 IDELR 41 (E.D. Pa. 2011):  A U.S. District Court allowed a former student to sue her previous school district for misidentifying her as a student with a disability.

The school district had classified the student as having a specific learning disability and speech and language disorder when she was in elementary school.  As part of a subsequent re-evaluation, the district determined the student no longer qualified as having a specific learning disability, but was still a student with a disability with an other health impairment (namely, organizational and attention issues).  Following the student’s graduation, she brought suit under Section 504 alleging discrimination by regarding her as disabled.  Specifically, she claimed that the school district incorrectly identified her as disabled and improperly placed her in a special education program.  The student sought money damages for the psychological impact of her misidentification, as well as her economic loss for placement in special education.

The school district moved to dismiss, but the Court allowed the case to proceed noting that the student should have the opportunity to discover facts regarding her claim for compensatory damages.

Tags: , , , , , , ,
Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Student may use Section 504 to sue for money damages for her misidentification as disabled.

Parent permitted to pursue child find claim by alleging sufficient facts that school district should have evaluated student with ADHD

Monday, May 9th, 2011

E.S. v. Konocti Unified School District, 55 IDELR 226 (N.D. Cal. 2010): The parents of a student with ADHD successfully avoided dismissal of their child find claims by alleging sufficient evidence that the school district should have evaluated the student to determine whether he was eligible for IDEA services.  Among the facts alleged by the parents were that the student was repeatedly disciplined by the school district for emotional outbursts, as well as defiant, disruptive, aggressive and other inappropriate behaviors.  The parents alleged that these behaviors, which are common manifestations of ADHD, caused the student’s educational performance to decline and necessitated special education services.  Moreover, the Court concluded that the parents raised sufficient facts in order to avoid dismissal of their claim for money damages under Section 504, which requires that the school district acted “intentionally or with deliberate indifference.”  The parents alleged that the school district was aware of the student’s disability, knew the student’s disability was substantially likely to impair his ability to receive educational benefit, and repeatedly failed to act upon that likelihood.

Tags: , , , , ,
Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Parent permitted to pursue child find claim by alleging sufficient facts that school district should have evaluated student with ADHD

Parents raised enough evidence for jury to decide whether they were entitled to damages for state education department’s Section 504 violations

Friday, January 7th, 2011

Mark H.  v. Hammamoto, 55 IDELR 31 (9th Cir. 2010):  The Court of Appeals determined that the trial court should not have issued a summary judgment dismissing the claims of the plaintiffs (the parents of two autistic girls) who sought damages for alleged violations of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act by the Hawaii Department of Education.  Although states and school districts typically will not be liable for damages for claims under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) or Section 504, parents can recover damages if the state or school district violated Section 504 intentionally or with deliberate indifference.  In this case the plaintiffs presented evidence that their daughters could not benefit from public education without receiving autism-specific services, the Department provided such services to other students with autism, the Department was aware that the plaintiffs’ daughters required autism-specific services, and the Department failed to provide such services to the plaintiffs’ daughters.  The trial court should have let the jury decide whether the plaintiffs are entitled to damages.

Tags: , , , , , ,
Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Parents raised enough evidence for jury to decide whether they were entitled to damages for state education department’s Section 504 violations

Entries (RSS) | Comments (RSS).