The federal Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) prohibits employers from discriminating against disabled employees. The ADA covers all aspects of employment: the application process; hiring, advancement, and discharge; and compensation, training, and other benefits. California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) serves the same purpose as the ADA while defining a qualified disability more broadly. The FEHA considers a disability to be any physical or mental impairment that limits one or more major life activities, such as caring for oneself, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, reading, and eating. The disability can be obvious (e.g., walking with a cane) or not readily apparent (e.g., depression). It’s also important to note that if an employer discriminates against you because he or she thinks you have a disability — even if you don’t — it is a violation of the law.
If these law were clear-cut, easy to understand, and guaranteed to be followed, of course, there would be no need for lawyers. Unfortunately, here in the real world, that’s not always the case. If you have requested a reasonable accommodation from your employer and are involved in the required good-faith interactive process of meeting and discussing potential accommodations, now is a good time to call me. You need someone who can help you navigate this process in a way that retains your right to any future recovery and helps you understand your employer’s legal requirements. If you find yourself in this unfortunate position, I can help. Please call me so we can get started.