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How to ask for a reasonable accommodation at work

On Behalf of | Oct 17, 2023 | Workplace Discrimination |

The U.S. Department of Labor explains that Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations for employees with disabilities.

A reasonable accommodation is an adjustment or modification your employer makes to help you perform your job effectively without causing undue hardship to the company. Following certain steps can make it easier for you to make such a request.

Identify the need

Determine what specific accommodation you require to perform your job effectively, based on your disability. This might include modifications to your workspace, changes to your work schedule or the use of assistive technology.

Consult your healthcare provider

Speak with your healthcare provider about your needs and request documentation that supports your accommodation request. This documentation should include details about your condition, its impact on your work and the recommended accommodation.

Schedule a meeting with HR or management

Request a meeting with your human resources department or supervisor to discuss your need for accommodation. Prepare to explain your situation, provide documentation, and discuss potential solutions.

Clearly articulate your needs and limitations. Describe how the accommodation will enable you to perform your job more effectively or alleviate barriers related to your disability.

Collaborate with your employer to explore possible accommodations. Be open to suggestions and alternatives that may achieve the same goal. Remember, the accommodation should be reasonable and not cause undue hardship for the company.

Maintain a record of all communications related to your accommodation request. This includes emails, meeting notes and any documents you and your employer exchange.

Follow up

If your employer agrees to the accommodation, ensure that implementation occurs as discussed. If you encounter any issues or need further adjustments, communicate them promptly.

If your employer denies your accommodation request, you have the right to appeal the decision. Work with your HR department to understand the appeals process and explore other possible solutions.

Requesting a reasonable accommodation can help create a more inclusive and accommodating work environment that allows you to perform your job to the best of your abilities. Just know your rights and how to handle any issues to make the process go smoothly.

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