California employers are generally required to provide reasonable accommodations for employees who need them. In some cases, companies must provide assistance to individuals who have shown signs of physical or cognitive impairment even if they haven’t asked for it. Take a closer look at what constitutes a reasonable accommodation and the process of obtaining one.
Examples of reasonable accommodations
An employer might meet its duty to a disabled worker by allowing that person to work fewer hours or work remotely. Employers might also meet their obligation to a disabled individual by modifying the tools used to perform a task or by providing more time to complete a project. If necessary, an individual can request to be put on light duty while recovering from an injury.
When must employers initiate the interactive process?
As a general rule, an employer must initiate the interactive process whenever there is sufficient evidence to suggest that a worker needs assistance. In some cases, this may occur when a worker requests more time off after taking several weeks of unpaid leave. In other cases, proactive measures might need to be taken after receiving a tip from a client, customer or other person affiliated with the organization. Regardless of who begins the interactive process, companies are required to engage with workers in a good faith manner.
If your employer fails to provide you with the resources necessary to do your job, it may be possible to take legal action against that organization. An attorney may be able to use medical records, statements from your manager or other evidence to show that your rights were disregarded. If your workplace discrimination claim is successful, you might receive compensation for lost wages, medical bills and other costs incurred as a result of improper treatment at work.