Disability Discrimination Based on Back or Spinal Cord Injuries

Employment Attorneys Representing New York City Workers

Injuries to the back or spine can happen at any time and can be extremely debilitating. The spine is made up of many nerves that relay messages to every part of the body, and an injury to the spine can result in paralysis or quadriplegia. Back injuries can include disc herniation as well as sprains, fractures, and compressed nerves. Often, back or spinal cord injuries limit major life activities, and they are considered disabilities under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Employment discrimination based on back or spinal cord injuries is unlawful. If you have been subjected to this illegal conduct on the job, the New York City disability discrimination lawyers at Phillips & Associates can assist you in bringing a claim.

Disability Discrimination Based on Back or Spinal Cord Injuries

When a business treats a qualified employee or job applicant who has a disability unfavorably based on his or her disability, this is disability discrimination. An employer must know of the disability in order to discriminate. Individuals who suffer from back or spinal injuries may suffer discrimination during the job application process or in the workplace when working for an employer that does not understand the need for reasonable accommodations.

An employer is prohibited from asking about your injuries during a job interview or during the application process, and an employer may not require you to undergo a medical exam as part of your application. However, a business may ask about your ability to perform essential job functions and require you to take a medical exam after a job offer. An employer may not fire you because it finds out that you suffer from back or spinal cord injuries during a post-offer medical exam or because you disclose this information. Once an employer discovers your spinal or back injuries, you may face discrimination from your employer in the form of changed responsibilities, ineligibility for promotion, or demotion. All of these actions are prohibited.

Your employer is required to provide a reasonable accommodation for your disabling back or spinal cord injury if it does not impose an "undue hardship." Whether a particular accommodation presents an undue hardship depends on how big the business is, the financial resources it has, the nature of the business and its needs, and other factors. Denying you a reasonable accommodation that does not impose an undue hardship is a form of employment discrimination. In some cases, you may need to go back and forth with an employer about possibilities for reasonable accommodations. If there is more than one accommodation that would work, your employer can choose which accommodation to provide.

If you believe that you suffered from discrimination based on a disabling back or spinal cord injury, you can file a charge of discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), which enforces the ADA and other federal anti-discrimination laws. You must file a charge of discrimination with the EEOC before you can file a federal lawsuit against your employer. In New York City, you are also protected under state and local laws that prohibit disability discrimination. The New York City Human Rights Law defines disability more broadly than the ADA does, and for some employees, such as people who work at smaller companies, it is a better route to resolving a disability discrimination claim. You can file your claim with the New York Division of Human Rights or the New York City Commission on Human Rights. These agencies and the EEOC have a work-sharing agreement, which means they cooperate to process claims as long as you indicate that you want to cross-file your claims.

Retain a Knowledgeable Disability Discrimination Lawyer in New York City

It is important to obtain representation from an experienced New York City disability discrimination attorney if you believe that you have suffered discrimination based on back or spinal cord injuries. At Phillips & Associates, we provide tenacious legal representation for employees who have been harmed as a result of discrimination or who need reasonable accommodations. Contact us at (212) 248-7431 or through our online form to set up a free appointment with an employment discrimination or wrongful termination attorney. We fight workplace discrimination throughout the Bronx, Queens, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Staten Island, Long Island and Westchester.

PHILLIPS & ASSOCIATES
45 Broadway, Suite 620,
New York NY, 10006
Tel: 212-248-7431
Fax: 212-901-2107
info@tpglaws.com