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Florida Disability Discrimination Attorney Ready To Serve You

Have you received unfavorable treatment by an employer because of a disability? 

Florida employment law states that people with disabilities must be treated exactly the same by employers as everyone else. If you have been a victim of disability discrimination, the law can help you redress the situation.

As a Florida disability discrimination attorney, I can help you:

  • Understand your rights according to state and federal laws
  • Assess whether you have a legitimate discrimination complaint 
  • Pursue legal action if you have been discriminated against because of a disability

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What does the law say about disability discrimination in Florida?

The Americans with Disabilities Act

There are state and federal laws that address disability discrimination in the workplace.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was introduced in 1990. At a state level, the Florida Civil Rights Act protects against discrimination for people with disabilities.

Disability Discrimination Case Examples

Alex, an employee with a mobility impairment, requests a reasonable accommodation in the form of a wheelchair ramp. However, the employer refuses to make the necessary modifications, hindering Alex’s ability to access the workplace.

Sarah, an employee with a visual impairment, is consistently assigned menial tasks or given less important assignments compared to her non-disabled colleagues, despite her qualifications and capabilities.

Michael, an employee with a hearing impairment, meets all the qualifications for a promotion but is overlooked solely due to his disability. The employer denies him the opportunity for career advancement based on stereotypes or assumptions about his abilities.

Emily, an employee with a mental health condition, endures constant ridicule, derogatory remarks, and offensive jokes from her coworkers. The hostile work environment created by the harassment adversely affects her well-being and job performance.

David, an employee with a learning disability, requests additional time or alternative formats for training materials. In response, the employer subjects him to unfavorable treatment, including increased scrutiny, negative performance evaluations, or undeserved disciplinary actions.

Olivia, an employee with a physical disability, faces barriers in accessing essential facilities, such as restrooms, break rooms, or workstations. Additionally, the employer fails to provide assistive technology that would enable her to perform job tasks effectively.

James, an employee with an intellectual disability, experiences prejudice and discrimination from his coworkers, who underestimate his abilities, exclude him from team projects, or make assumptions about his competence based on his disability.

Sophia, an employee with a chronic health condition, requests a flexible work schedule or intermittent leave as a reasonable accommodation. However, the employer has rigid policies in place that do not consider the specific needs of employees with disabilities, resulting in the denial of her request.

Who’s Covered Under the ADA?

It is important to understand what counts as a disability according to the law.

Under the ADA, a person with a disability is someone with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, has a record of such impairment, or is regarded as having a disability.

Therefore, the ADA prohibits employers from discriminating against qualified individuals with disabilities in all employment practices. 

It also protects you:

  • If you have a history of such a disability, or 
  • If an employer believes that you have such a disability, even if this is not the case. 

Additionally, an employer is required to make a reasonable accommodation to a qualified individual with a disability unless doing so would impose an undue hardship (significant difficulty or expense). This is the heart of the meaning of the ADA.

Key Definitions

“Qualified” individuals with a disability must be able to satisfy the skill, experience, education, and other job-related requirements of the position. They must also, with “reasonable accommodation” be able to perform all the essential functions of the position in question.

In this sense, “reasonable accommodation” includes efforts from the employer to facilitate the hiring of a disabled employee. These efforts should not result in a lowering of production standards or require the provision of personal equipment (like hearing aids).

Right to reasonable accommodations can include:

  • Introducing greater accessibility
  • Modifying equipment
  • Job restructuring or modification of work schedules
  • Providing additional leave (unpaid)
  • Modifying training materials or policies
  • Providing qualified readers or interpreters

An employer’s reasonable accommodations may also depend upon the employer’s size and resources – remember, the focus is on reasonableness for both employee and employer. For instance, it might be reasonable to negotiate the installation of a wheelchair lift to improve accessibility at an employer’s landmark headquarters. But insisting upon retrofitting the building’s main entrance with a complicated ramp system at the cost of millions may not be reasonable under the circumstances. This is especially true if a smaller modification will achieve similar accessibility.

Disability Discrimination Under the Law

ADA discrimination in any of the following employment situations is illegal:

  • Hiring and firing employees
  • Awarding pay
  • Making job assignments
  • Deciding on promotions and demotions
  • Laying off employees
  • Training employees
  • Fringe benefits like health insurance
  • Any other term or condition of employment

This is not an exhaustive list, and if you do experience discrimination due to your disability at work or in the terms and conditions of employment, contact a Florida disability discrimination attorney today.

Examples of Disability Discrimination

Actions from employers that contravene the disability discrimination laws include:

  • Refusing to interview or hire people because of a disability 
  • Asking inappropriate or prohibited questions at an interview (e.g. inquiring about the existence, nature, or severity of a disability)
  • Insisting on a medical examination (unless it is required by all new employees in that job category)
  • Refusing to promote an employee because of a disability
  • Failing to give equal job assignments to employees with disabilities
  • Providing lower compensation (wages, salaries, benefits) for disabled employees
  • Failing to provide the same training opportunities for disabled employees as for other employees

Note that testing for the use of illegal drugs is not considered the same as a medical examination, so it is not legislated under the ADA like medical examinations.

If you have a disability that qualifies you for the use of medical marijuana in Florida, check with a Florida disability discrimination attorney about any specific issues you need to be aware of. While some states, like Florida, allow the use of medical marijuana, your employer may still be able to prohibit the use of this medication and screen for it in a drug test.

Have you suffered disability discrimination from an employer or potential employer?

Sometimes, disability discrimination in the workplace is blatant, but it can also take subtler forms, such as:

  • A question asked during an interview
  • Being well-qualified for a promotion but ignored in preference of a less-qualified or experienced individual
  • Being treated differently after an accident leaves you disabled 

Discrimination like this is, unfortunately, still common in the workplace.

The results can severely impact lives, leading to:

  • Restricted career opportunities
  • Lower income 
  • Stress and other health issues

Sometimes, disability discrimination is unreported out of fear of losing one’s job.

Remember that you are protected from retaliatory actions by employers against whom you:

  • Make a complaint 
  • File a claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) 
  • Serve as a witness in another employee’s disability discrimination case

If you have been discriminated against, seek the right legal advice before taking any action.

Discriminated against because of a disability in Florida? What can you do?

Do you feel that you are a victim of workplace disability discrimination in Florida?

There is no need to tolerate further discrimination.

You may be able to make a claim or take legal action that requires your employer to:

  • Take action to restore you to the same position you would have been in if the discrimination had not taken place
  • Pay damages to compensate you for back pay, benefits, emotional distress, suffering, and so on
  • Prevent future acts of discrimination

As an experienced Florida disability discrimination attorney, I can help assess your case.

If taking legal action is the right option, I will help you take the necessary steps to build your case.

Contact a Florida disability discrimination lawyer

From here, we need to:

  1. Assess your claim. Start by booking a free phone consultation below.
  2. Decide whether to pursue a complaint after our consultation.
  3. File a complaint or lawsuit with a local or federal agency, or state or federal court.
  4. Prepare the paperwork so that we can draft the complaint or lawsuit.

Our experienced legal team also handles clients with other types of discrimination cases, including:

Contact the Florida disability discrimination attorney of Brenton Legal P.A. today.

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