Aug 1, 2022

Is My Employer Legally Required to Honor Accommodations?

Work injuries can often result in medical restrictions and necessary accommodations needed to return to work. These can range from accessibility aids like hearing aids or wheelchairs to more broad factors like work schedules and “light duty work.” However, many employees may have reservations about requesting accommodations in the workplace out of fear of retaliation or that they may not be honored.

In these circumstances, it is important to remember that your employer is legally obligated to honor reasonable accommodation requests under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

What to Know When Requesting Reasonable Accommodations

According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), an employee may request reasonable accommodations simply by letting their employer know they need a specific change because of a medical condition. You do not need to use the phrase “reasonable accommodation” in order to receive them. However, not all accommodations may be met, and the condition must meet the ADA’s definition of a disability in order to be honored by law.

What Do I Do If My Employer Won’t Honor My Accommodations?

It’s not uncommon for accommodation requests to be rejected —often because an employer doesn’t know or understand exactly what the employee needs. Putting these requests in writing can help ensure they have a clear and concise understanding of what is being requested.

In some situations, you may be able to appeal an accommodation decision if you believe it is reasonably aligned with ADA requirements. This may require legal assistance depending on the circumstances.

It’s also important to note that there are some requests that may not be honored simply because they eliminate essential job functions or are only aiding the employee outside of the workplace. As such, these are not always considered reasonable and may be denied.

Work Injury? Call 770-922-3660

If you’ve been injured in the workplace, you need the help of an experienced workers’ compensation attorney to ensure you are receiving the benefits you need to heal and return to work. Our Atlanta attorneys have extensive experience in helping individuals throughout Georgia receive the compensation they deserve. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 770-922-3660.