Can disability discrimination include refusal to grant leave?

The Americans with Disabilities Act provides protection to workers to stop employers from exhibiting any kind of discrimination against them during the hiring process, when they are on the job, and when dismissing them among many other aspects of work. Employers are required to provide reasonable accommodation when it does not cause undue hardship on the business.

Disabled employees have rights to take leave if they need it. If they are legally allowed to take it and are not granted that right, this can be the basis of a legal filing. It is reasonable accommodation if the worker tries to use paid or unpaid leave and it is necessary because of the disability. The employer is not obligated to give paid leave beyond what is given to every employee. The employee should be allowed to use paid leave and then unpaid leave should be given.

The following are reasons why a disabled employee might need leave: to get medical treatment, rehabilitation or therapy; to recuperate from an illness or an episode; to have repairs done on items that are needed to help the person function such as a wheelchair; to avoid adverse issues at work such as a breakdown in the heating and cooling system in the office; to train a service animal; or to get training in sign language or braille. There are other reasons why it would be granted.

The employer cannot use a no-fault leave policy dismissing an employee after they have been on leave for a disability and need extra time. The employer must keep the job open for a disabled person as that is part of reasonable accommodation. Employees cannot be penalized for work they have missed while they are on leave as part of reasonable accommodation. If an employee asks for leave as part of a reasonable accommodation, the employer does have the right to give a different accommodation that allows the person to stay on the job such as letting the employee work at home, if possible.

There are many forms of disability discrimination and if a worker needs to take leave because of their disability, violation of the law of reasonable accommodation under the ADA can justify a lawsuit. A law firm that has experience in disability discrimination cases should be consulted with to take the necessary steps to file a lawsuit to be compensated if this has occurred.