The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) became law in 1990 and applies to employers with 15 or more employees. Among other things, the ADA prohibits employees from discriminating against employees with disabilities. An employee with a disability is defined as a person who:
- Has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life;
- Has a record of such an impairment; or
- Is regarded as having such an impairment.
If an employee qualifies as disabled as defined by the ADA, they are entitle to a reasonable accommodation to facilitate their continued employment, so long as they can perform the essential functions of the job for which they are hired. An employer does not have to make a reasonable accommodation for a disabled employee if it will cause an undue burden, which is defined as an action requiring significant difficulty or expense when considered in light of factors such as an employer’s size, financial resources, and the nature and structure of its operation. An employer is not required to lower production or quality standards to accommodate a disabled employee.
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