As an experienced New York Employment Lawyer, I most often get asked how to request an accommodation at the office under the americans with disabilities act. In terms of the disability laws in New York, if the employee is always putting a statement out there that they are suffering from some mental or physical incapacity and the question arises as to what exactly the employee needs to do, to prove to the employer that they are actually suffering this physical or mental incapacity. Often times, these are accompanied by requests for the employee to be accommodated in some way in the workplace in New York.
The employer certainly is entitled to get information pertaining to that and it may include medical information which normally the employee would want to keep private and confidential. There is always a doctor patient relationship that looms in the backgrounds of these kinds of requests but the employer is certainly entitled to ask for the employee to release certain records, or to provide certain medical proofs in the form of a doctor’s note or a doctor's opinion letter.
I will tell employers as an experienced New York Employment Lawyer that you can also have the employee examined by a physician of their own choice, so that their physician can give an opinion that they will then use or rely upon in determining whether this employee should be given an accommodation and whether this employee can or cannot perform the job without that accommodation. For example, somebody may be requesting light duty and the job involves lifting boxes of 30 pounds or more, if a physician certifies that the employee is not able to do that particular job function, there is very little the employer can do to accommodate that. However, if the physician certifies that the employee can lift up to 15 pounds, then there is something that can be done in order to keep that employee employed for a short period of time. While that disability is being worked through, they end up avoiding a situation of either contentiousness on the job or subsequent termination where the employee is then bringing a claim against the company for failure to accommodate.
If you have an employee who is requesting an accommodation under the The Americans with Disabilities Act, contact our experienced New York Employment Lawyers.
This informational blog post was provided by Kim Berg, an experienced New York Employment Lawyer.