Employment Law

Disability Discrimination

The ADA mentions a “qualified individual with a disability.” What is such a “qualified individual”?

The ADA defines a qualified individual as “an individual who, with or without reasonable accommodation, can perform the essential functions of the employment position that such individual holds or desires. For the purposes of this subchapter, consideration shall be given to the employer’s judgment as to what functions of a job are essential, and if an employer has prepared a written description before advertising or interviewing applicants for the job, this description shall be considered evidence of the essential functions of the job.”

There are two key terms in this definition—“essential functions” and “reasonable accommodation.” This basically means that the employee must be able to perform the key functions of the job either with or without a reasonable accommodation from the employer.


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