As an employee, you may have had to use medical leave either to care for yourself or for a loved one. If eligible, you may have taken medical leave under the Family Medical Leave Act which grants employees a designated amount of unpaid medical leave during the calendar year provided that the employee is eligible. But what about medical leave outside of FMLA. What about medical leave as a reasonable accommodation under the American with Disabilities Act?
While there is no “duration” cutoff for the amount of time an employer has to grant an employee under the ADA, when an employee requests “one more day” of unpaid leave as an accommodation, an employer likely will be found to have acted unreasonably under the ADA by denying the request.
In a recent case involving the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and a Maryland medical practice, an employee was paid $92,500 by her former employer after she requested an additional day off from work in order to receive medical treatment for her disability. Originally, the employee had received two weeks of unpaid leave from the employer, however, when the employee requested one additional day as an additional accommodation she was terminated from her employment.
Not only did the medical practice pay the former employee $92,500 to settle the case, it also agreed to a three-year consent decree prohibiting it from violating the ADA, requiring it to revise its attendance policy to permit disability-related accommodations, mandating management training on the ADA and reasonable accommodations, and obligating the employer to report to the EEOC on its compliance with the consent decree. All of this because the employer decided to terminate the former employee rather than give her an extra day off of work.
If you have questions about taking medical leave from your employer or feel that you may have been retaliated against for taking or requesting medical leave, contact an employment attorney and learn how the law protects your rights.
If you even think that your employment rights have been violated or that you might need an employment lawyer, then call the right attorney to schedule a free and confidential consultation at 866-797-6040. The Spitz Law Firm is dedicated to protecting employees’ rights and solving employment disputes.
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