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06 . 28 | Insights

Can I Sue My Los Angeles Employer for an ADA Violation

Three Questions to Ask in Suing a Los Angeles Employer for an ADA Violation

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was a landmark piece of civil rights legislation signed into law in 1990 by President George Bush, expanding civil rights for more Americans than any other law since the 1960s. In essence, the ADA (among other things) outlawed employment discrimination against those disabilities, providing them similar protections as those who experienced employment discrimination on the basis of gender, religion, race, or national origin.

Because the ADA is a federal law, it has nationwide reach and will apply to many employers in Los Angeles as well as other places across California and the U.S.

When a Los Angeles employer or prospective employer violates the ADA by denying an employee or job applicant his or her rights, that person may be able to sue the employer for the ADA violation and recover a financial award and/or an injunctive award such as being restored to their position at the employer.

But there are several questions you will want to go through with an experienced Los Angeles ADA employment attorney to determine your eligibility and likely success in bringing an ADA claim.

Is the Employer Covered by the ADA?

The ADA applies to most employers with 15 or more employees. This can include corporations, LLPs, non-profits, and many governmental offices (California state law provides protections to some employers not covered by the ADA). The definition of employers also includes employment agencies and labor organizations.

Do You Have a Covered Disability?

The ADA does not itself include a specific list of what health conditions qualify as a disability, but does say a person with a disability (thus a person protected by the ADA) is one that has a physical or mental impairment that impairs at least one major life activity.

The disability can be one that the person currently has, one the person had in the past, or one that the person does not have but which the employer perceives the person as having (e.g. believing a job applicant has AIDS when the applicant does not).

Potential types of disabilities covered by the ADA include (this is not a complete list):

  • Blindness
  • Deafness
  • Paralysis
  • Loss of limbs
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Cancer
  • Heart Disease
  • Pregnancy
  • Epilepsy
  • Diabetes
  • Muscular dystrophy
  • Depression
  • Asthma

Could the Employer Have Provided a Reasonable Accommodation For Your Disability?

If you have a disability, then your employer or a potential employer is required to make reasonable accommodations for you to carry out the tasks of the job. Accommodations means some kind of adjustment which allows you to do the job in spite of the disability. “Reasonable” means the employer does not have to take unreasonable accommodation steps when a person’s disability makes them unable to do a job (for example, a fire department would likely not be required to take steps to allow a paraplegic person to fight forest fires).

Reasonable accommodations to allow an employee or applicant to do a job might include:

  • Providing special equipment to do the job
  • Providing adjusted seating or desks
  • Allowing the person to take breaks as needed or work on an adjusted schedule
  • Allowing the person to work from a different location

Speak to an experienced Los Angeles employment discrimination attorney about all of these questions to determine whether you are eligible to bring a successful ADA claim.

Contact a Los Angeles ADA Discrimination Attorney Today

If you suspect that you have been the victim of pregnancy discrimination, work with the employment law team at LawPLA who can help you assess your situation and understand what legal options are available to you. Contact LawPLA today to schedule a consultation to discuss your potential pregnancy discrimination law claim.

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