Companies can’t discriminate when ordering medical exams

Companies can require their employees to undergo medical examinations in certain situations as a condition of employment. But as a recent case from Maryland’s highest court shows, they can’t do so in a discriminatory manner.

In that case, an employer had required a female truck driver to have a medical exam for a condition involving heavy menstrual bleeding. She filed a complaint with a local civil rights commission. When the employer learned about the complaint, it fired her. She sued for sex discrimination and retaliation.

According to the employee, the exam requirement amounted to sex discrimination because several male employees with serious health problems, including diabetes, Parkinson’s Disease and severe dizziness, were not required to undergo medical tests.

The court agreed, upholding a substantial jury verdict for the employee.