Florida’s courts have expanded protection for HIV-positive employees under the Florida Civil Rights Act (FCRA). At first glance, the law appears to be a state version of Title VII of the federal Civil Rights Act and the ADA all rolled into one. But state court interpretation of the act may grant Florida employees protections they don't have under federal law.
Like the ADA, the FCRA prohibits discrimination against disabled employees. The FCRA says employers may not discriminate based on “handicap,” a term it doesn’t define. The ADA uses the term “disability,” defined as a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a major life function. Because the FCRA does not define the word “handicap,” most state courts use the ADA’s definition of “disability.”
The ADA also protects employees that employers regard as being disabled. The FCRA contains similar language, but is very specific about HIV-positive...(register to read more)