Companies cannot deny an employee disability benefits based on their ability to perform a job that only exists “in theory,” a federal appeals court ruled Thursday.

The United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit reversed a lower court’s decision that found Means Industries Inc. was justified in denying long-term employee Kyle Kennard disability benefits after a medical exam by a company-selected doctor found he was able to work a clerical position in an “absolute clean-air environment.”

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