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No, you can’t use high medical costs as an excuse to terminate a sick worker

A car dealership is out $325,000 and must train managers and supervisors on the ADA and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act.

Accommodate neurodiverse employees

Most organizations probably have at least one employee who fits under the neurodiverse umbrella and who may be entitled to workplace help. While each condition labelled as neurodivergent differs, all share a number of common management strategies that can prove useful in the workplace.

Disability accommodation not working? Restart interactive process before making changes

Sometimes, an employee’s health condition changes, requiring a modification of a previously chosen accommodation. When that happens, the interactive process must start all over again. Employers cannot unilaterally drop an accommodation or substitute another.

Accommodating staff with anxiety disorders

The psychological condition known as anxiety disorder is characterized by feelings of worry or fear that are strong enough to interfere with one’s daily activities. It comes in several varieties, including generalized anxiety disorder that has no specific focus and social anxiety disorder, which is triggered by social interactions.

As employer, you get to choose and implement your preferred disability accommodations

Employers and disabled employees must engage in an “interactive process” to determine what accommodations will allow employees to perform the essential functions of their jobs. If more than one might work, the employer gets to pick which one to implement. Once that’s done, the employer has met its ADA obligations, even if the employee refuses the accommodation.

ADA doesn’t require unlimited leave

Here’s a powerful reason to require regular attendance as an essential job function: A new federal appeals court decision makes it clear that the ADA’s reasonable accommodations provisions strictly limit time off as a reasonable accommodation when employers can show that a job’s essential functions include showing up for work as scheduled.

Develop a process for extending FMLA leave

Every employer needs a clear process for handling requests for additional time off after an employee exhausts FMLA leave. How you handle those requests can make the difference between winning and losing a disability discrimination lawsuit.

Beware bad-mouthing effective employees after they request accommodations

Always keep an eye on the optics of the employment-related actions your organization’s managers take and the decisions they make. Suddenly criticizing an employee who recently sought a disability accommodation, for example, is not just a bad look; it could also trigger a costly lawsuit.

ADA: If employee’s preferred accommodation won’t work, you must explore alternatives

Here’s a reminder to make sure you pay more than lip service to following the ADA and its requirement to reasonably accommodate disabled applicants who are qualified to perform their jobs. As one employer recently learned, it’s not enough to become known as a welcoming place for disabled workers. You must follow through whenever a disabled employee requests a reasonable accommodation.

Accommodating Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia in the workplace

If you have a worker who reveals a dementia diagnosis and requests reasonable accommodations, follow your usual ADA accommodations process. Determine if the employee is disabled and discuss possible accommodations using the ADA’s interactive process.