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Employer controls which accommodation to offer

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in Discrimination and Harassment,Human Resources

Some disabled employees seem to think that the accommodation they prefer must be the one they get as long as it meets the definition of “reasonable.” They’re wrong.

The employer gets to pick. As long as the accommodation allows the employee to perform essential functions, the employer has done what it is required to do under the ADA.

Recent case: Judy, a nurse, had multiple sclerosis. Her doctor said she needed to be reasonably accommodated with an eight-hour workday, with only occasional longer days.

Judy, however, requested a transfer to a different department entirely. Her request was denied and she quit.

Then she sued, alleging failure to accommodate. The court tossed out the case, noting that her employer had provided its choice of accommodation, just not the exact one she wanted. (Pomerantz v. Houston Methodist, No. H-12-3479, SD TX, 2014)

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