How to Survive the ADAAA: Seven Best Practices for Employers

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In my previous post, I noted that litigation under the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act was starting to emerge from its dormant stage and promised to provide some best practices for employers to follow.

The most important thing to remember about the ADAAA is that, for the most part, all it does is change (albeit drastically) the definition of "disability." The ADAAA does not affect the old ADA's anti-discrimination, reasonable accommodation, confidentiality, or "medical examination" provisions. As a practical matter, what this means is that employers will no longer be able to rely on the defense of "no disability," but if they avoid discrimination and handle reasonable accommodation requests well, they should still be able to avoid liability.

With that "bottom line," here are my best practices for staying out of trouble in light of the ADAAA:

1. Unless the employee is claiming the flu or a common cold as the alleged disability, forget about nit-picking whether the condition is a "disability" within the meaning of the ADA. In all likelihood, it is. Challenging the employee's "disability" status is a waste of time with the new expanded definition of "disability" under the ADAAA. Proceed on the assumption that the employee is "disabled," and save your resources for ensuring that the employment decision is handled fairly and

Please see full article below for more information.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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