The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in employment. It provides protection to qualified individuals with a physical or mental disability that substantially limits one or more major life activities.
Who Is A “Qualified Individual With A Disability?”
To qualify for a disability discrimination claim, you must be considered a “qualified individual with a disability.” This means that you must be able to perform the essential functions of the job, either with our without a reasonable accommodation.
In determining whether or not a worker is “disabled” for the purposes of California law, the law requires that the medical condition impact a “major life activity”. However, the employee’s job and ability to work is considered a “major life activity” under California law. So, even if the disability doesn’t impact many areas of the employee’s day-to-day life, if it affects employment, it is generally considered a disability for the purposes of California law.
Disability Discrimination & Reasonable Accommodation
Your employer is also required to make “reasonable accommodations” that allow you to perform your job, unless doing so would cause significant difficulty or expense for the employer. This may include, for example, making the workplace accessible for wheelchair users, allowing more frequent rest breaks, or providing a reader for someone who is blind. One of the most common accommodations requested by employees is a temporary medical leave of absence to recover from a particular disability.
Who Is Protected From Employment Discrimination?
The Americans with Disabilities Act applies to ALL employers with 15 or more employees. It also applies state and local governments, employment agencies, and labor unions. Religious organizations are similarly covered, however they may legally prefer to employ members of their religion.
Is Your Employer in Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act?
Disability discrimination cases have many complexities, including the proper application and interpretation of both federal and state laws. We are well versed in the nuances of both, and we often work with medical and vocational experts as needed. If you believe you have beenwrongfully terminated or treated unfairly due to a disability or medical condition, we want to hear about it. Call us today for your free consultation with one of our California Employment Attorneys.