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Accommodating employee disability: Advice for employers from recent court cases

While you must accommodate disabilities, you don’t have to tolerate chronic absenteeism

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in Centerpiece,Employment Law,Human Resources

Employers must reasonably accommodate disabled workers so they can perform the essential functions of their jobs. But at what point does absenteeism make it impossible for the worker to perform the job?

In fact, regular attendance is an essential function of many jobs. Absenteeism so chronic that it’s clear the employee can’t be counted on to show up regularly may be good reason to terminate.

Simply put, you don’t have to accommodate excessive absences because doing so is unreasonable.

Recent case: Michael worked for the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation as a maintenance worker from April 2013 until January 2014. During that time, he missed 87 days of work. He claimed the reason was that he suffered from a bulging disk in his neck that caused severe migraine headaches that prevented him from getting out of bed in the morning to go to work. He was terminated.

Michael sued, alleging failure to accommod...(register to read more)

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