The implications for lawyers are huge. Some could develop a niche practice in fighting for the rights of the obese in insurance-reimbursement claims, special accommodations in everywhere from the workplace to transportation (think the size of plane seats), and applications for disability.
As THE NEW YORK TIMES reports, the influential American Medical Association has classified obesity as a disease. When it also designated alcoholism as a disease decades ago, much changed. Insurance companies had to reimburse those now-standard 28-day rehabs. Courts had to consider mitigating circumstances in how to deal with alcohol related crimes like drunk driving, and employers could be on the hook for putting the active alcoholics on disability, instead of just on the street.
Much will have to be decided legally about obesity. This is very good news for lawyers searching for a specialized practice.