Essential Functions Reasonable Accommodation

News & Analysis as of

Labor and Employment Group News: Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission Hit With Substantial Disability Discrimination Award

Private employers will feel faint satisfaction in learning that a Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD) Hearing Officer has lowered the boom in a disability discrimination case on a state agency servicing...more

CAS Legal Mailbag Question of the Week – May 2016

Dear Legal Mailbag: One of my teachers, Mal Content, has always been curt and lacking in compassion for his students. However, Mal seems to be getting worse and worse. Originally published in the CAS Weekly...more

Clearly Defining the Essential Functions of the Job Can Make or Break Your ADA Case

As a recent federal appellate decision confirmed, the Americans with Disabilities Act does not require employers to always accommodate a disabled employee. Instead, it is the employee’s burden to first show that he or she...more

Permanent Light Duty Not Required Under ADA

Employers frequently offer light duty work as a means for injured employees to return to their regular job duties. Light duty is typically associated with employees with Workers’ Compensation related injuries. ...more

Fourth Circuit Says Driving May Not Be Essential Job Function for Traveling Salesperson

Most employers would assume that a traveling salesperson who could no longer drive due to a medical condition cannot perform the essential functions of her job. The Americans with Disabilities Act only requires accommodations...more

Is Driving An “Essential Function Of The Job” For Your Road Warriors?

If your employee isn’t a professional driver but spends a lot of time on the road, how “essential” a job function is driving for ADA purposes? Is driving “essential” at all? In what I consider to be a very significant...more

Light Duty Takes Hard Hit

Many employers have what they call “light duty” policies whereby they allow employees to continue working even though the employees are unable to perform some of the essential functions of their jobs. Very few employers can...more

Accommodations Legalese: 5 Key Terms Every Employer Should Know

It’s true in other areas of employment law as well, but in the world of disability discrimination law there are numerous phrases that have taken on special meaning and become true terms of art. Even those who are well-versed...more

Employer Not Required to Accommodate Inability to Work Predictable Hours

In recent administrative actions, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has taken the position that regular attendance is not an essential job function under the Americans with Disabilities Act. The agency views...more

Americans with Disabilities Act: Focusing on Reasonable Accommodations

Employees are asking for reasonable accommodations more often and for a wider array of medical conditions. The kinds of accommodations sought are more varied than ever, including working from home, extended leave, allowances...more

Ninth Circuit Says Employee Who Made Death Threats Against His Co-Workers Could Not Sue His Employer For Disability Discrimination

Joining similar holdings from several other circuits, the Ninth Circuit recently held in Mayo v. PCC Structurals, Inc. that a depressed employee who threatened to kill his co-workers and was thereafter fired was not a...more

Does Your ADA Accommodation Have To Be Perfect, Or Can It Just Get The Job Done?

The Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) requires that employers provide “reasonable accommodations” to those with disabilities to perform the essential functions of their jobs. These accommodations cannot impose an undue...more

Fourth Circuit Affirms EEOC’s Resounding Summary Judgment Defeat in ADA Case

In a case we have previously blogged about several times due to spoliation sanctions imposed on the EEOC – most recently here - the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit affirmed a ruling out of the Middle District of...more

Telecommuting May Not Always Be a Reasonable Accommodation Under the ADA

An en banc panel of the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals (Court) recently upheld the trial court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of Ford Motor Company in EEOC v. Ford Motor Company, on the basis that telecommuting was not...more

Second Circuit Upholds Employers' Use of Effective ADA Accommodation Over "Perfect" One Sought by Employee

Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations for employees with disabilities in order for them to perform the essential functions of their jobs. Employers and...more

Bad News, Good News: Disability Discrimination Plaintiff Sometimes Need Not Show He Was Qualified, But May Never Recover Punitive...

In a decision to be officially released on May 19, 2015, the Connecticut Appellate Court has addressed two interesting issues in the state law of employment discrimination, one of which is of considerable importance (and...more

Even Under the ADA, Some Jobs Require Being On-Site; Court of Appeals Decision Offers Lessons

Last month in EEOC v. Ford Motor Co., 782 F.3d 753 (6th Cir. 2015) (en banc), the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit found that a Ford employee was not qualified for her job under the ADA because she was not...more

Sixth Circuit Sides with Ford Motor Company in ADA Telecommuting Case

Employers often grapple with what constitutes a reasonable accommodation under the American with Disabilities Act (“ADA”). This issue becomes increasingly complex when evaluating whether telecommuting is an appropriate and...more

The ‘interactive process’ for handling work restrictions during pregnancy

Our first segments in our six-part series on pregnancy in the workplace focused on how the ADA, FMLA and PDA apply in the workplace to employees before, during, and after pregnancy and child birth. In this segment, we narrow...more

When Is Telecommuting a Reasonable Accommodation Under the ADA?

Earlier this month, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals shared its perspective on this question and held that telecommuting was not a reasonable accommodation for an employee where her essential job duties required regular and...more

ADA “Direct Threat” Defense Just Got a Little Easier

The rights and protections afforded to those with disabilities by the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) are not without limitations. Accommodations for disabled employees must be reasonable, and the employee must still...more

Employer Not Required by ADA to Permit Employee to Telecommute

Reversing an earlier panel decision, the Sixth Circuit has held that an employee who was unable to regularly and consistently attend work was not a qualified individual with a disability under the Americans with Disabilities...more

11th Circuit Upholds Bar on Claims by Jail Officer with Cancer

The Eleventh Circuit recently held that an officer at a county jail in Florida who was undergoing treatment for cancer cannot proceed with her Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA") claim because she failed to identify a...more

Sixth Circuit Rejects EEOC's Demand for Telecommuting as ADA Accommodation

Last year, a panel of the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals held 2-1 that the Americans with Disabilities Act required Ford Motor Company to allow a buyer with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) to possibly telecommute up to four...more

Is Telecommuting A Reasonable Accommodation, Or Is It Not?

In the context of a lawsuit brought under the Americans with Disabilities Act, a recent court decision says that “regular attendance” is an essential function of the job. But what is “regular attendance”?...more

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