Category: ADA & Disabilities

The Americans with Disabilities Act protects qualified disabled employees from discrimination. HR Daily Advisor gives you the background you need on who’s covered, what constitutes a “reasonable accommodation”, issues involving health insurance and medical leave, tax incentives for employers, and more.

telecommuting

5th Circuit Assures Employer That Some Good Deeds Do Go Unpunished

Although disability-based harassment/hostile work environment claims have been recognized by the courts for a while, they aren’t very common. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit—which covers Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas—recently rejected an employee’s claim of disability-based harassment under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), finding her employer’s good-faith efforts to engage in […]

Print
ADA

Disability Discrimination in the Workplace Costs Employers

It’s no secret that discrimination, harassment, and retaliation claims based on disability cost employers plenty—and it’s not just the dollars awarded in damages (although, admittedly, some jury awards are eye-popping). It’s the expense of litigation. It’s the time employers must spend defending claims. It’s the bad publicity for the company. It’s the damage to employee […]

Print
service snake

Service Animals Gone Wild: Bring Your Boa Constrictor to Work Day

Employees with qualifying disabilities may rely on a service and/or emotional support animal for a variety of reasons, and allowing them to do so at work may be considered a “reasonable accommodation” under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), provided the task performed by the animal is needed in the workplace, it’s directly related to […]

Print
ADA

Off the Hook for ADA Discrimination Claim? Not So Fast, Says Texas Court

I know this sounds like a contradiction, but a Dallas court recently said it wasn’t. So, a Texas employer can be cleared of firing an employee because of his disability—despite the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA)—but still be liable for failing to provide a reasonable accommodation. The Dallas office of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission […]

Print
disability

Iowa Court Decision Blurs Definition of Disability in Workers’ Comp Cases

A recent decision from the Iowa Court of Appeals should cause Iowa employers to hit pause on routine decisions relating to workers’ compensation claimants. The decision, Vetter v. Iowa Department of Natural Resources, effectively dismantled the definition of “disability” for disability discrimination claims.

Print
injury

ADA: Who Determines the Essential Functions of a Job?

An employee with a disability must demonstrate that he is able to perform the essential functions of his job, with or without reasonable accommodations, in order to be protected by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). But what exactly does “essential functions” mean? What are the essential functions of a particular job, and who determines […]

Print
nuclear

Was There Fallout from Nuclear Plant Employee’s ADA Claim?

Determining what is a reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is meant to be an interactive process between the employer and the employee. However, after exerting significant amounts of energy in the process, one Illinois employer got a reaction it had hoped to avoid—a lawsuit.

Print
teacher

Be Diligent and Thorough in the Interactive Process, Even When Employees Aren’t

Recently, the 7th Circuit—which covers Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin—issued an opinion underscoring the importance of diligence, thoroughness, and consistent communication when you interact with employees seeking accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and reiterating its position that the interactive process is a shared responsibility between employers and employees.

Print

Who Let the Dogs in? Possibly HR: Service Animal Requests in the Workplace

Employees’ service animal accommodation requests tend to bring out the beast in everyone – employees requesting the accommodation, employers, and other employees.  Anecdotally, service animal questions are on the rise, dogging HR professionals.  The issue is here to stay.

Print
back injury

Does Mine Supervisor with Bad Back Have Disability Bias Claim?

Terminated employees who sue often file claims for unlawful discrimination and breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing. Recently, the Alaska Supreme Court analyzed how a claim for breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing relates to a disability discrimination claim. The court also considered when evidence is sufficient […]

Print