What is an Example of a Reasonable Accommodation?
Reasonable accommodations vary depending on a range of factors including the specific law applied and the nature of your disability. These factors can include part-time or modified work schedules, acquiring equipment, different training materials or policies, and providing interpreters or qualified readers. If you have been denied a reasonable accommodation for your disability or you are uncertain of what your rights are, you should discuss your situation with the seasoned New York City employment discrimination lawyers of Phillips & Associates. We represent clients on a contingency fee basis. Knowing prospective clients may be uncertain about what constitutes reasonable accommodations for their disabilities, we provide free consultations.Reasonable Accommodations Under the ADA
The federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) provides that if you have a disability as the law defines it, you can get a reasonable accommodation. Generally, reasonable accommodations involve alterations to schedule, work environment, or work-related technology. The situation and disability will determine what would be “reasonable.”
Examples of reasonable accommodations under the ADA may include:
- Installing a ramp for those who are in wheelchairs or struggle with stairs.
- Modifying a restroom to allow access.
- Alterations to your cubicle or providing dividers to cordon off your workspace if you suffer from an anxiety disorder that is activated by too much stimulation.
- Making assistive technologies available in connection with your work.
- Modification of a workspace.
- Providing screen reader software for workers with vision impairments.
- Permitting the use of videophones to facilitate communications if you are a deaf worker.
- Providing interpreters or closed captioning.
- Policy enhancements to allow you to work remotely when you are in a flare for a chronic medical condition or lupus.
- Adjustment of work schedules so you can get medical treatment as a worker with a cancer.
- Making materials available in large print or Braille to the vision impaired.
The New York State Human Rights Law (NYSHRL) allows you to obtain a reasonable accommodation in a New York City workplace if you have a disability as the state law defines this, even if you are an independent contractor. Reasonable accommodations under the New York State Human Rights Law are changes made that allow a disabled employee to perform, in a reasonable manner, the activities involved in the job or occupation sought. Examples of these include:
- Acquisition or modification of equipment
- Support services for those with impaired vision or hearing
- Modification of work schedules or job restructuring
- Provision of an accessible worksite
- Making existing facilities more accessible to people with disabilities
- Job restructuring
- Modified work schedules
- Adjustments to a work schedule for treatment or recover
- Adjustment of exams
- Providing readers or interpreters
- Training policies or materials.
Your employer can deny you a reasonable accommodation if it would impose an undue hardship. For example, if you work for a tiny food stand in New York City and it would bankrupt your employer to modify your work schedule for your chemotherapy appointments and time off, this may not be a reasonable accommodation.
Whether a particular reasonable accommodation will be granted requires the employer to balance certain factors, such as:
- The benefit the accommodation would provide towards removing impediments to performance caused by the disability
- Convenience or reasonableness of the accommodation for the employer including its comparative convenience as distinct from other potential accommodations.
- The costs, hardships, and problems it would cause for an employer including those caused for other employees.
Your employer should talk to you about the accommodations you need and whether there are any feasible alternatives to the one you propose that would suit your restrictions.
Reasonable accommodations do not include:
- Providing for personal care needs such as an assistant
- Providing non-work-related aids such as a wheelchair.
Reasonable accommodations under the New York City Human Rights Law include any change to your work schedule or duties to accommodate your specific needs and permit you to do your job. Your employer is supposed to provide reasonable accommodations to satisfy the needs of those who are psychologically, mentally, medically, or physically impaired or have a record of that impairment.
- Review any policies or practices preventing light duty work.
- Conduct trainings for managers on the new legal requirements of a cooperative dialogue process for reasonable accommodations.
- Post required notices.
- Review hiring practices and job postings.
- Update work policies on light duty, absences, and reasonable accommodations to comply with guidance and the law.
Examples of reasonable accommodations do not provide the full analysis our lawyers are able to do when talking to you about your case. Every case is different. Reasonable accommodations vary depending on your particular situation along with the resources of your New York City employer. If you think you might have a claim against your employer for failure to accommodate your disability, you should call our seasoned employment discrimination attorneys. Phillips & Associates is a plaintiff’s firm that fights for disabled workers in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island, the Bronx, Nassau County or Suffolk County. Our lawyers are award-winning and knowledgeable, and we can ask you questions about what happened in your specific case to figure out how the court is likely to view your case. In addition, we have filed many lawsuits and have strong reputations that serve us well when negotiating settlements in mediation or arguing before judges. Our experience allows us to compare any prospective client’s case with how the court has evaluated similar cases we’ve handled in the past. Call us at (212) 248-7431 or complete our online form for a free consultation.