When a person with disabilities is hired by an employer, or a current employee develops a disability, employers in Minnesota and elsewhere need to take certain steps to better accommodate the individual. If an employer fails to carryout such action, this could be considered a violation of the Americans with Disability Act, more commonly referred to as the “ADA.”

Who can make an ADA violation claim for not having reasonable accommodations? Both job applicants and employees are able to make an ADA violation claim if they believe that an employer or potential employer has not taken reasonable steps to accommodate the individual with a disability.

Because the ADA requires that an employer provide reasonable accommodations that will enable those with disabilities to perform the essential functions of their job and enjoy the equal employment opportunities of their colleagues and fellow applicants, if an applicant or employee believes that an employer has failed to achieve requirement, a claim could be filed. However, the ADA acknowledges that not all reasonable accommodations can be easily implemented in the workplace. In fact, some could cause an undue hardship on the employer. In these matters, employers must seek funding for these reasonable accommodations if it is a cost issue. Additionally, employees and applicants must also be afforded the opportunity to take on these costs as well.

If an employer appears to be inflexible or unwilling to accommodate an applicant or an employee, this could be considered disability discrimination. Those involved in such a situation should understand that there are options and rights afforded to them, which could help them hold an employer liable and assist them with recovering damages caused by the situation.

Source: The Business Journals, “Why ADA accommodations aren’t only for employees,” Darlene Clabault, Oct. 29, 2015