An accommodation has to make it possible to do the work, not avoid the work

Because many employers are not well versed in the Americans with Disabilities Act there is often confusion on whether a request accommodation must be granted. The good news is that a requested accommodation does not have to be granted if it does not actually allow the employee to perform the job. The purpose of an …

Read moreAn accommodation has to make it possible to do the work, not avoid the work

For want of a chair: Mistakes made in an ADA case

Sometimes you just wonder what people are thinking.  A recent ADA case demonstrates what I mean. The situation An employee was working in a long-term temporary position and had been for several years. He had a kidney condition that was getting worse, but he was able to continue to work with an accommodation. He provided …

Read moreFor want of a chair: Mistakes made in an ADA case

Does allowing telecommuting make it more difficult to fire employees?

The answer like the majority of questions in HR is “It depends” as articulated in an article by Daniel Schwarz of Jackson Lewis in his discussion of the case Hostettler v. College of Wooster, in the 6th District Court of Appeals (Ohio.) The case According to Schwarz, the employee in question was suffering from recovering …

Read moreDoes allowing telecommuting make it more difficult to fire employees?

70,000 Reasons to Conduct Individual Assessments in ADA Determinations

The Americans with Disabilities Act requires that employers not discriminate against workers on the basis of their disability. I mentioned this in yesterday’s blog post. However, one area of “disability” that many employers don’t realize is covered is enrollment in a bona fide treatment program for drug or alcohol treatment. This is a lesson that …

Read more70,000 Reasons to Conduct Individual Assessments in ADA Determinations

What is required for protection under the ADA?

In a situation of an interview or dealing with an ADA situation, I tell clients and students alike that one of the things they need to have memorized is the question “Can you perform the essential functions of this job, with or without a reasonable accommodation.” It is truly essential. Must be able to perform …

Read moreWhat is required for protection under the ADA?

Another case of “bad” HR- Misusing medical information

Prior to the Americans with Disabilities Act being passed in 1990 it was common practice to ask medical screening questions on an application or at least on a separate sheet of paper. However, with the passage of that law 27 years ago it became illegal to collect medical information or have an applicant take a …

Read moreAnother case of “bad” HR- Misusing medical information

Yes! Interactive means Interactive and not just once!

Under the ADAAA (Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act) there is a requirement that employers have interactive discussions with employees about their needs for accommodations in performing their jobs. My Miriam-Webster dictionary defines interactive as “mutually or reciprocally active” which implies a back and forth discussion. That is also what the EEOC defines as interactive. …

Read moreYes! Interactive means Interactive and not just once!

Yes, leave can be considered a reasonable accommodation even when not covered by the FMLA

The intersection of the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Family and Medical Act can be a trying one. There have been numerous cases where courts have ruled that additional leave beyond the 12 weeks permitted by the FMLA would be considered a reasonable accommodation for the individual with the disability. Of course the courts …

Read moreYes, leave can be considered a reasonable accommodation even when not covered by the FMLA

Avoiding lawsuits is as simple as a little bit of training

An office cleaning company found out that just providing supervisors with a little bit of training would have been a much cheaper solution than paying a $16,000 settlement because of discrimination. Scoliosis gets in the way According to the EEOC a Michigan based company that provides corporate cleaning services will pay $16,000 to settle disability …

Read moreAvoiding lawsuits is as simple as a little bit of training

Just because it takes extra time and effort is no reason to avoid the accommodation discussion

According to a press release by the EEOC, a Texas based company is paying a fine of $110,000 to settle a suit where they were charged with not hiring two applicants based on their inability to hear. The Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA) requires employers to engage in interactive discussions with applicants or …

Read moreJust because it takes extra time and effort is no reason to avoid the accommodation discussion

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