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Understanding Reasonable Accommodations for Disabled Employees in California

January 17, 2023 Admin Discrimination

In California, employers are legally required to provide reasonable accommodations for disabled employees. A reasonable accommodation is any change or modification to the workplace or the nature of an employee’s duties/work performance expectations that allows an individual with a disability to perform the essential functions of the job. There are several examples of reasonable accommodations that California employers may be legally required to make for disabled employees, including:

  • Modifying work schedule: An employee with a disability may require a modified work schedule to accommodate their needs. For example, an employee who requires regular medical treatment may need to have flexible hours or a part-time schedule to accommodate their appointments. An employer may be required to provide this accommodation as long as it does not cause an undue hardship to the employer.
  • Making facilities accessible: An employer may be required to make physical changes to the workplace to make it accessible to employees with disabilities. This may include installing ramps, elevators, or automatic door openers, or making changes to the layout of the workplace.
  • Providing assistive technology: An employer may be required to provide assistive technology or other devices to employees with disabilities. For example, an employee who is blind may require a computer with a screen reader, or an employee with mobility issues may require a specialized keyboard or mouse.
  • Providing sign language interpreters or readers: An employee who is deaf or hard of hearing may require a sign language interpreter or reader to communicate with colleagues or customers. An employer may be required to provide this accommodation as long as it does not cause an undue hardship to the employer.
  • Allowing time off for medical treatment: An employee with a disability may require time off for medical treatment or therapy. An employer may be required to provide this accommodation as long as it does not cause an undue hardship to the employer.
  • Job restructuring: An employee with a disability may require changes to their job duties or work environment to allow them to perform the essential functions of their job. An employer may be required to restructure the job or make other changes to the work environment as long as it does not cause an undue hardship to the employer.

It’s important to note that the reasonable accommodations will vary depending on the employee’s individual needs and the specific requirements of the job. Employers are not required to make accommodations that would cause an undue hardship to the employer, which is defined as an action that would be too difficult or too expensive to implement.

When to Contact a Los Angeles Disability Discrimination Attorney?

An employer who doesn’t make reasonable accommodations for an employee with a disability may be engaging in an illegal form of workplace discrimination in California. However, because it can be difficult to know what does and doesn’t constitute a reasonable accommodation, it may be challenging for an employee to determine if their employer has broken the law.

It’s wise to consult with a lawyer in these circumstances. At Rager & Yoon – Employment Lawyers, a Los Angeles disability discrimination attorney will review your case and explain your potential legal options. For more information, contact us online or call us at 310-527-6994.

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