Buczek v Meijer Thrifty Acres – 7.22

Buczek v Meijer Thrifty Acres
Digest no. 7.22

Section 28 (1)(c)

Cite as: Buczek v Meijer Thrifty Acres, No. 79 928 311 AE, unpublished opinion of the Wayne Circuit Court (December 21, 1979).

Appeal pending: No
Claimant: Catherine Buczek
Employer: Meijer Thrifty Acres
Docket no.: B76 19230 55251
Date of decision: December 21, 1979

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CIRCUIT COURT HOLDING: Where a pregnant woman is medically restricted from heavy lifting, and only one of her several assignments is affected, but the employer unilaterally places the claimant on leave, the claimant is unemployed and available for work.

FACTS: The claimant did not request maternity leave, but did submit a doctor’s note restricting her from heavy lifting during her pregnancy. Only one of the claimant’s several assignments required heavy lifting. The employer put the claimant on leave unilaterally.

DECISION: The claimant was unemployed and available for work during the unilateral leave.

RATIONALE: “[W]here an employer decides to place an employee on a maternity leave of absence for a reason other than one contained in MCLA 421.48, the employee, though on an employer imposed leave of absence, is not on a Section 48 leave of absence for purposes of determining her employment status under the Act.”

“She was available for suitable work for which she was qualified except for the heavy lifting limitation. This limitation affected only a portion of one job duty, i.e., lifting groceries into the shopping cart, and neither would have detracted from her ability to perform her other job duties at Meijer nor the office work she was qualified to perform by past experience or training as these jobs did not require heavy lifting within the doctor’s restriction.”

Digest Author: Board of Review (original digest here)
Digest Updated: 11/90