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  #16  
Old 03-28-17, 10:32 PM
Letching Gray Letching Gray is offline
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Re: Legal Issues, Employment, Privacy and ADHD

When does ADHD count as a protected ‘disability’?

by MINDY CHAPMAN, ESQ. on SEPTEMBER 16, 2009 1:00PM
in DISCRIMINATION AND HARASSMENT,EMPLOYMENT LAW,HUMAN RESOURCES
Do you have employees who are easily distracted, restless, disorganized and forgetful? Maybe that’s just who they are—or maybe they’ve been diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).

It’s pretty common. About 8 million adults in the United States suffer from it. It’s an “invisible” disability, but one court recently said employers shouldn’t be so fast to discount it. A disability is a disability … whether you can see it or not.

Case In Point: Dr. Robert Lewis worked in the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center emergency room. He told the ER chief that he thought he had ADHD and asked to be accommodated by seeing only one patient at a time.

The chief denied his request and formally put Lewis on probation because he was “impaired and distractible.” Lewis was also required to undergo a psychological evaluation. Subsequently, Lewis was diagnosed with ADHD.

The hospital asked his treating doctor to provide “as much information as possible.” Lewis’ doctor said confidentiality requirements prohibited him from proving all info, but he offered to respond to specific questions. The hospital never followed up.

Soon after, Lewis was terminated for allegedly failing to provide a letter from his psychologist about his ADHD diagnosis, failing to park in the doctors’ parking lot and having unsigned paperwork for more than 30 days.

Lewis sued under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), saying the hospital had a duty to accommodate his ADHD behavior.

The result: The court sided with Lewis and sent the case to a jury, saying Lewis showed enough evidence that the hospital regarded him as disabled and fired him because of his ADHD.

The court also rejected the hospital’s defense that it fired Lewis because he didn’t provide enough medical info, saying, “Disabled employees, especially those with psychiatric disabilities, may have good reasons for not wanting to reveal every detail.” (Lewis v. UPMC Bedford, W.D. Pa., 3/30/09).
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Old 04-03-17, 03:10 AM
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Re: Legal Issues, Employment, Privacy and ADHD

It's interesting that the company physician was able to diagnose ADHD, it's a bit tricky unless it is suspected...

After another ADD related incident, I believe the management team for the company I work for has decided there is "something" wrong with me that causes small, repetitive, mistakes in judgement. I had to face 3 angry executives wanting to know what could have POSSIBLY motivated an employee with 15 years experience, who has been a top-performer - to do something so dumb (actual question). I wanted to say something, but my experience told me to apologize and move on...until they told me that "actions, no matter how unintended, have consequences..." Said that while they were convinced I was not intentionally insubordinate, "someone" on the senior staff had taken it that way - so I was issued a written reprimand. I believe this was A) to scare me into THINKING before I say/type anything, make an unpopular/unfiltered public statement B) the first step in "documentation" process.

I've never disclosed that that I have ADD, it's been the career killer. I've been unmedicated for a very long time - but lately it's been harder to focus, easier to make judgement errors, and has me in a tight pickle...especially now that my employer knows I crossed the age 50+ age barrier. I think they may be trying to make the case that my mental "dexterity" has eroded...so, while the case noted above seems to give me hope, the law's vagueness surrounding the interpretation of terms such as "necessary accommodation" and "restriction of duties" has me concerned.

I'm not sure how long I have, but corporate America isn't really invested in waiting for the courts to figure out restrictions & accommodations. I appreciate the posts like this - I'm keeping track like never before.
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Old 05-04-17, 01:53 AM
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Re: Legal Issues, Employment, Privacy and ADHD

Quote:
Originally Posted by namazu View Post
No, an employer doesn't have to hire someone with a disability, even if they're qualified, but they can't discriminate against them because of the disability, either. That said, proving discrimination on the basis of disability (when there may be a lot of qualified applicants for a position) tends not to be easy in a lot of cases.
A small part of my situation is something like this. I work mostly from home. I requested reasonable accommodation in the form of a phone call or email prior to monthly meetings. The head of my department agreed to it. It amounted to something as simple as calling me on my cell home, or a friendly email reminder, about 10 times a year. That is all!

Unfortunately, later on the head didn't even bother to follow up. I never received any reminder whatsoever. I attended about 7/10 meetings that I remembered, but as no accommodation was provided, I missed the other meetings.

When I applied for promotion, the head, in the recommendation letter, simply listed my failure to attend meetings regularly. The board (quite unaware of the situation) declined my application for promotion, on that basis!
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