Make sure your supervisors know they must consider post-surgery ADA accommodations and should forward such requests to HR.
Under no circumstances should an employee be summarily fired just because she’s used up herand still needs help during recovery.
Recent case: Carolyn worked as a public health nurse and tookleave for foot surgery. When her leave was up, she was still using a motorized scooter to get around and wanted to use it at work. Without even considering the request, Carolyn’s supervisor fired her—after allegedly telling Carolyn that she did “not want me around the patients in the clinic because of my wheelchair.”
Carolyn sued and her former employer tried to get the case dismissed on a technicality. The court refused and ordered an ADA trial for failure to accommodate. (Sydnor v. Fairfax County, No. 11-1573, 4th Cir., 2012)
- Think twice before doing anything to discourage employee lawsuit
- Firing for poor work or rule breaking? Clear business reason will beat lawsuit
- Base firing on solid evidence of wrongdoing
- Remind bosses: Employees approved for intermittent FMLA leave are entitled to take it
- If worker is out on FMLA leave, can we modify her job?