Disability discrimination attorney Dan A. Atkerson has fought to protect the rights of victims of disability discrimination for more than 32 years in Allen, TX, and throughout Collin County. He then pursues all available damages from employers responsible for acts of workplace disability discrimination.
Understanding Federal Disability Laws
Federal disability law specifically prohibits disability discrimination in the hiring, firing, advancement, compensation, job training and other employment decisions. Whether a disability is physical or mental, applicants and employees with disabilities still have basic employee rights under the law. A worker with a disability may be facing disability discrimination in the workplace if an employer bases certain employment decisions on the disability or on costs of providing reasonable disability accommodations. This includes denying the rights of workers to take disability leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). However, not all employers in North Texas must abide by the Americans with Disability Act (ADA) or FMLA laws.
What is Disability Discrimination?
Both the state of Texas and federal employment law prohibits employers from violating employee rights and from disability discrimination. Disability discrimination may include anything from verbal harassment to failure to promote to wrongful termination. Issues of disability discrimination and workplace discrimination of any kind can then cause serious emotional and financial consequences.
Some disabilities are frequently involved in employment disability discrimination claims, including:
- Blindness or vision impairment
- Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
- Crohn’s disease
- Confinement to a wheelchair
- Diabetes or chronic diseases
- Graves’ disease
- Learning disability
- Limited mobility
- Multiple sclerosis
- Mental illness
- Restrictions on lifting
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Sleep apnea
If you have dealt with disability discrimination or an FMLA violation, then Mr. Atkerson may be able to help you seek compensation for the harm the discrimination in the workplace caused.
Federal disability law specifically prohibits disability discrimination in the hiring, firing, advancement, compensation, job training and other employment decisions.
Discrimination Protection Under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990
Congress passed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in 1990. It defines a person with a disability as an individual who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, who has a record of such impairment or who is regarded as having such an impairment.
Under federal and Texas employment laws, disability discrimination extends to both employees with disabilities and those treated differently because of a known association with an individual with a disability if the employer meets the following guidelines:
- Has 15 or more employees
- Is an employment agency, labor organization or state and local government employer
A consultation with Dan Atkerson can then help employees understand whether their employer’s actions cross the line into disability discrimination and ADA violations of their employee rights. Learn more about violations and FMLA eligibility here.
Employers Have Responsibility to Provide Reasonable Accommodations
The ADA requires an employer to make reasonable accommodation for a qualified worker with a disability in three ways:
- Provide equal opportunity in the application process. This includes assisting the potential employee in completing the application or providing application alternatives, such as Braille applications.
- Enable the qualified individual with a disability to perform the essential functions of the job. This includes changing work schedules or modifying duties.
- Enable the employee with a disability to enjoy the benefits and privileges of employment, such as removing obstructions, adding a wheelchair ramp or reserving handicapped parking.
These are just a few examples of possible reasonable accommodations. However, reasonable accommodations are by no means limited to this list. The employee with a disability should first initiate the request for reasonable accommodation and then engage the employer in an interactive process to identify these reasonable accommodations. Employers should fulfill most reasonable disability accommodations to modify or adjust job duties or work environments to allow workers to perform their essential job duties. However, the employer may not be required to make these reasonable disability employment accommodations if the employer can prove that doing so would then cause undue hardship to the business.
Schedule a Consultation
If you feel that you or a family member has been a victim of disability discrimination, you may be entitled to compensation. Mr. Atkerson has been a disability discrimination attorney for over 32 years, and he has helped many clients successfully negotiate with employers. To schedule your consultation, contact us online or call our office at (214) 383-3606.