An employer can ask if you can perform the duties of the job with or without reasonable accommodation. An employer can also ask you to describe or to demonstrate how, with or without reasonable accommodation, you will perform the duties of the job. An employer cannot require you to take a medical examination before you are offered a job. Following a job offer, an employer can condition the offer on your passing a required medical examination, but only if all entering employees for that job category have to take the examination.
However, an employer cannot reject you because of information about your disability revealed by the medical examination, unless the reasons for rejection are job-related and necessary for the conduct of the employer's business. The employer cannot refuse to hire you because of your disability if you can perform the essential functions of the job with an accommodation.
Once you have been hired and started work, your employer cannot require that you take a medical examination or ask questions about your disability unless they are related to your job and necessary for the conduct of your employer's business. Your employer may conduct voluntary medical examinations that are part of an employee health program, and may provide medical information required by State workers' compensation laws to the agencies that administer such laws. The results of all medical examinations must be kept confidential, and maintained in separate medical files.
Anyone who is currently using drugs illegally is not protected by the ADA and may be denied employment or fired on the basis of such use. The ADA does not prevent employers from testing applicants or employees for current illegal drug use.
If you think you have been discriminated against in employment on the basis of disability after July 26, , you should contact the U. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. A charge of discrimination generally must be filed within days of the alleged discrimination. You may have up to days to file a charge if there is a State or local law that provides relief for discrimination on the basis of disability.
However, to protect your rights, it is best to contact EEOC promptly if discrimination is suspected. You may file a charge of discrimination on the basis of disability by contacting any EEOC field office, located in cities throughout the United States. If you have been discriminated against, you are entitled to a remedy that will place you in the position you would have been in if the discrimination had never occurred. You may be entitled to hiring, promotion, reinstatement, back pay, or reasonable accommodation, including reassignment. You may also be entitled to attorneys fees. While the EEOC can only process ADA charges based on actions occurring on or after July 26, , you may already be protected by State or local laws or by other current federal laws.
EEOC field offices can refer you to the agencies that enforce those laws. This program is designed to help people with disabilities understand their rights and to help employers understand their responsibilities under the law.
In January , EEOC published a Technical Assistance Manual, providing practical application of legal requirements to specific employment activities, with a directory of resources to aid compliance. EEOC publishes other educational materials, provides training on the law for people with disabilities and for employers, and participates in meetings and training programs of other organizations.
EEOC staff also will respond to individual requests for information and assistance. The Commission's technical assistance program is separate and distinct from its enforcement responsibilities. Employers who seek information or assistance from the Commission will not be subject to any enforcement action because of such inquiries. The Commission also recognizes that differences and disputes about ADA requirements may arise between employers and people with disabilities as a result of misunderstandings. Such disputes frequently can be resolved more effectively through informal negotiation or mediation procedures, rather than through the formal enforcement process of the ADA.
Accordingly, EEOC will encourage efforts of employers and individuals with disabilities to settle such differences through alternative methods of dispute resolution, providing that such efforts do not deprive any individual of legal rights provided by the statute.
Understanding the Employment Rights of Veterans With Service-Related Disabilities Under the ADA
Is an employer required to provide reasonable accommodation when I apply for a job? Applicants, as well as employees, are entitled to reasonable accommodation. For example, an employer may be required to provide a sign language interpreter during a job interview for an applicant who is deaf or hearing impaired, unless to do so would impose an undue hardship. If you think you will need a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in the application process or to perform essential job functions, you should inform the employer that an accommodation will be needed.
Employers are required to provide reasonable accommodation only for the physical or mental limitations of a qualified individual with a disability of which they are aware.
Generally, it is the responsibility of the employee to inform the employer that an accommodation is needed. The ADA requires that the employer provide the accommodation unless to do so would impose an undue hardship on the operation of the employer's business. If the cost of providing the needed accommodation would be an undue hardship, the employee must be given the choice of providing the accommodation or paying for the portion of the accommodation that causes the undue hardship.
Can an employer lower my salary or pay me less than other employees doing the same job because I need a reasonable accommodation? An employer cannot make up the cost of providing a reasonable accommodation by lowering your salary or paying you less than other employees in similar positions. Does an employer have to make non-work areas used by employees, such as cafeterias, lounges, or employer-provided transportation accessible to people with disabilities?
The requirement to provide reasonable accommodation covers all services, programs, and non-work facilities provided by the employer. If making an existing facility accessible would be an undue hardship, the employer must provide a comparable facility that will enable a person with a disability to enjoy benefits and privileges of employment similar to those enjoyed by other employees, unless to do so would be an undue hardship.
Americans With Disabilities Act: Information for People Facing Cancer
If an employer has several qualified applicants for a job, is the employer required to select a qualified applicant with a disability over other applicants without a disability? The ADA does not require that an employer hire an applicant with a disability over other applicants because the person has a disability. An employer, therefore, may ask applicants to voluntarily self-identify as individuals with disabilities or "disabled veterans" when the employer is:.
An employer also may ask organizations that help find employment for veterans with disabilities whether they have suitable applicants for particular jobs and may access websites on which veterans with disabilities post resumes or otherwise express interest in employment. What steps should an employer take if it asks an applicant to self-identify as a "disabled veteran" for affirmative action purposes?
If an employer invites applicants to voluntarily self-identify, the employer must indicate clearly and conspicuously on any written questionnaire used for this purpose, or state clearly if no written questionnaire is used , that:.
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Information collected for affirmative action purposes must be kept separate from the application to ensure that confidentiality is maintained. Are there are any laws that allow agencies to give special consideration to veterans with disabilities who are looking for jobs with the federal government? Under the Veterans' Preference Act, veterans with and without disabilities are entitled to preference over others in hiring from competitive lists of eligibles and may be considered for special noncompetitive appointments for which they are eligible. Federal agencies also may use specific rules and regulations, called "special hiring authorities," to hire individuals with disabilities outside the normal competitive hiring process, and sometimes are even required to give preferential treatment to veterans, including disabled veterans, in making hiring decisions.
Here are some of the special hiring authorities federal agencies may be able to use to hire veterans with disabilities:. For more information on veterans' preferences and special hiring authorities, see the "Vet Guide" on the U. May a private employer give preference in hiring to a veteran with a disability over other applicants? Although the ADA prohibits discrimination "on the basis of disability," it does not prevent affirmative action on behalf of individuals with disabilities. Thus, a private employer may -- but is not required to -- hire an individual with a disability who is qualified including a veteran with a disability over a qualified applicant without a disability.
VEVRAA also requires these businesses to list their employment openings with appropriate employment service delivery systems, and to give covered veterans priority in referral to such openings. What are some specific steps employers may take to recruit and hire veterans with disabilities?
First, the ADA requires employers to ensure that online job announcements, recruiting information, and application processes are accessible to individuals with disabilities, including applicants who have service-connected disabilities. Even where employers do not specifically recruit veterans with disabilities, they should make sure that there is nothing in a job announcement or on an application form that would discourage anyone with a disability from applying.
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For example, employers should not state in vacancy announcements that applicants must be in "excellent health" or describe how a function must be performed e. Often, reasonable accommodations are available that will allow a veteran with a disability to perform a function in a way that is different from the way it is typically done.
What types of reasonable accommodations may veterans with disabilities need for the application process or during employment? While not all veterans with service-connected or other disabilities will need an accommodation or require the same accommodation, the following are examples of accommodations that some veterans may need to apply for or perform a job:. How does an employer know when a veteran with a disability needs an accommodation?
Usually, the process of providing a reasonable accommodation will begin with a request from the individual with a disability. A family member, friend, health professional, rehabilitation counselor, or other representative also may request a reasonable accommodation on the veteran's behalf. The request does not have to mention the ADA or use the term "reasonable accommodation" and simply can be an oral or written statement indicating that the individual needs an adjustment or change in the application process or at work for a reason related to a medical condition. A request for reasonable accommodation is the first step in an informal interactive process between the individual and the employer.
The process will involve determining whether the veteran requesting a reasonable accommodation has a disability where this is not obvious or already known and identifying accommodation solutions. Employers should ask the particular veteran requesting accommodation because of his disability what is needed to do the job. There also are extensive public and private resources to help employers identify reasonable accommodations for employees with particular disabilities.
ADA (Dept. of Justice) « ADA – Olmstead
For example, the website for the Job Accommodation Network JAN provides a practical guide for employers on reasonable accommodation, as well as information about accommodations for specific disabilities, including one on "Accommodating Service Members and Veterans with PTSD. May an employer ask a veteran with a disability whether a reasonable accommodation is needed if none has been requested? During the application process, an employer may explain what the hiring process involves e. In addition, if an employer reasonably believes that a veteran with an obvious service-connected disability e.
Once a veteran with a disability has started working, an employer may ask whether an accommodation is needed when it reasonably appears that the person is experiencing workplace problems because of a medical condition. Because many veterans may not view their service-related injuries as disabilities, they may not ask, or know that they are entitled to ask, for a reasonable accommodation. As a result, it may be critical for the employer to initiate a conversation with a veteran who is experiencing problems to determine an appropriate accommodation.
Working together, the employer and veteran should identify what the veteran cannot do and then discuss ways to address any identified performance issue s. USERRA prohibits employers from discriminating against employees or applicants for employment on the basis of their military status or military obligations. It also protects the reemployment rights of individuals who leave their civilian jobs whether voluntarily or involuntarily to serve in the uniformed services, including the U.
Reserve forces and state, District of Columbia, and territory e. While the ADA requires employers to make certain adjustments for veterans with disabilities called "reasonable accommodations," USERRA requires employers to go further than the ADA by making reasonable efforts to assist a veteran who is returning to employment.
Related ADA - Know Your Rights as a Returning Service Member with a Disability U.S. Department of Justice
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