Man Told Job Not to Celebrate His Birthday. He Was Awarded $450K After Unwanted Party

Kevin Berling suffers from an anxiety disorder and told his job that a birthday celebration would trigger a panic attack, according to a lawsuit

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A Kentucky man with an anxiety disorder asked his former employer not to celebrate his birthday because it triggers panic attacks.

When the company, Gravity Diagnostics, ignored Kevin Berling's request and had a surprise lunchtime celebration for him on Aug. 7, 2019, he got upset. Days later Berling was fired, according to a lawsuit he filed in a Kenton County court against the company.

On March 31, a jury awarded him $450,000. The jury found that Berling suffered an "adverse employment action" because of his anxiety disability, court documents show.

The saga began in August 2019 when Berling told his office manager that he did not want to celebrate his birthday because it would trigger a panic attack. The company has a practice of having birthday celebrations at the office for employees, the lawsuit, filed in 2019, says.

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