Employment Attorney Answers: “Can I get help with training for my disability under the ADA?”, “Can my boss demote or fire me because I’m disabled?” and “What should I do when I’ve been fired?”
As another lesson that employers must provide reasonable accommodations for their disabled employees, Dollar General recently found out that failing to do so can cost lots of dollars, $47,500 of them. This award is particularly significant in light of the fact that only $40 of the settlement was for the lost wages of the employee whom Dollar General discriminated against.
As the employment law attorneys at the Spitz Law Firm know, under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), employers must provide reasonable accommodations for the known physical and mental disabilities of their employees, unless doing so would cause the employer an undue hardship. Some examples of reasonable accommodations include acquiring or modifying equipment or devices, offering part time hours or a modified schedule, making the workplace readily accessible to and usable by people with disabilities, and adjusting or modifying examinations, training materials or policies. In EEOC v. Dolgencorp, LLC, d/b/a Dollar General Store, Dollar General got itself in trouble with that last requirement – adjusting or modifying examinations, training materials or policies- when they failed to accommodate and later demoted an employee who sought help reading testing material due to his disability, dyslexia.
As part of his job, the disabled employee was required to take several computer-based training courses, followed by a written exam. However, due to his dyslexia, the employee had difficulty reading the training material. The employee then asked for help reading the material, he was told he could not have any assistance, and further, that if he failed to complete the training and take the test, he would be demoted. When the employee proved unable to complete the test without assistance, Dollar General demoted him to a lesser paying position with reduced hours.
Subsequently, the employee filed a claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, (EEOC) alleging disability discrimination. The EEOC opted to sue on the employees behalf, and Dollar General later settled by agreeing to train its managers about discrimination and compliance with the ADA, and paying the settlement.
While the employee in this case went through the EEOC, the agency rarely pursues claims in court. In 2012, the agency only filed 155 lawsuits out of 99,412 complaints of discrimination per year (.1 percent or one out of every 1,000), turning away even good cases because of limited resources – and doing so after long delays. Unlike the EEOC, the employment law attorneys at the Spitz Law Firm will timely pursue monetary awards for 100 percent of their clients should they have a viable claim.
If you are disabled or your employer perceives you as being disabled; and you have been fired, wrongfully terminated, discriminated against, demoted, wrongfully disciplined, denied wages, or even think that you might need a disability discrimination lawyer, then call the right attorney to schedule a free and confidential consultation at 866-797-6040. The best option is not to wait. The Spitz Law Firm, and its attorneys are experienced and dedicated to protecting disables employees’ rights under ADA and Ohio law.
The materials available at the top of this page and on this employment law website are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. If you are still asking, “how do I get a work accommodation for my disability?”, “am I disabled under the ADA?”, “what should I do if…” or “can my boss fired me for …”, it would be best for you to contact an Ohio attorney to obtain advice with respect to disability discrimination questions or any particular employment law issue. Use and access to this employment law website or any of the links contained within the site do not create an attorney-client relationship. The legal opinions expressed at or through this site are the opinions of the individual lawyer and may not reflect the opinions of The Spitz Law Firm, attorney Brian Spitz or any individual attorney.