In response to the end of the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency Declaration, the EEOC updated its COVID-19 technical assistance: “What You Should Know About COVID-19 and the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act, and Other EEO Laws”.
Appellate Court Addresses How Much Information Employee Must Submit to Support an Accommodation Request
One of the many difficult issues employers face under the ADA is determining what information a disabled employee must provide to an employer to trigger the employer’s duty to accommodate a disability. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit addressed that question for the first time in Owens v. Georgia.
Fourth Circuit Rules: Gender Dysphoria Is Not Excluded from Coverage under the ADA
Gender dysphoria is not excluded from the broad definition of “disability” protected under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), a divided panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit has held.
Is COVID-19 a Disability? EEOC Provides Updated Guidance
On Dec. 14, 2021, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) added a new section, COVID-19 and the Definition of “Disability” Under the ADA/Rehabilitation Act, to its COVID-19 guidance.
DHHS and DOJ Issue Guidance on “Long COVID” As a Disability
On July 26, 2021, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) issued guidance explaining that “long COVID” can be a disability under Titles II and III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which apply to state/local government and public accommodations respectively.
Incentives: From Water Bottles to “Not So Substantial”
For years, the EEOC has waffled about whether incentives were permissible in connection with a medical inquiry under a voluntary wellness program. The EEOC issued its most recent pronouncement on the topic — this time related to incentives for COVID-19 vaccinations.
EEOC Updates Its Guidance On Vaccinations
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued additional informal guidance concerning COVID-19 vaccination issues.
For Once, Good Deed Goes Unpunished
Allowing an employee to self-limit duties and not perform an essential function of a position for an extended period of time may give the employee the expectation that they are performing the essential functions of the position. Setting employee expectations is often key to avoiding litigation.
What Does the CDC’s Latest Mask Guidance Mean For Businesses Open to the Public?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) latest guidance that fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear masks or social distance in many settings raises questions for businesses in retail, hospitality and other settings open to the public.
Fifth Circuit Holds Regular Attendance Is Essential
An employer’s past leniency in applying and enforcing its attendance policy did not contradict the employer’s later position that regular worksite attendance was required for employment, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit has held.
Seventh Circuit Continues To Find That Lengthy Leaves of Absence May Not Be Reasonable Accommodations
On Dec. 30, 2020, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit issued its opinion in McAllister v. Innovation Ventures, LLC, No. 20-1779 (7th Cir., Dec. 30 2020), and held that an employer did not violate the ADA where it terminated its employee after it became clear that she would require several additional months of leave after she had already been granted a two-and-a-half-month leave of absence due to her disability.
Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana User May Proceed With Disability Discrimination And Retaliation Claims
A federal court in Pennsylvania held that a medical marijuana user’s claims for disability discrimination and retaliation were sufficiently alleged to survive the employer’s motion to dismiss.
Want to Know if Your Employees Received the COVID-19 Vaccine? Some Best Practices to Consider
While its rollout has been slow, the vaccine is being administered across the U.S. and in other countries. For a variety of reasons, organizations want to know whether their workforce members (employees, contractors, etc.) have been vaccinated. The EEOC has provided some guidance on the issue.
Wellness Programs and Water Bottles – EEOC Proposes New Rules under the ADA and GINA
Since 1996, when Congress passed the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), employers have been struggling with whether and to what extent they could offer incentives to employees to participate in certain “wellness programs.” On Jan. 7, the EEOC proposed a new approach that may provide employers some certainty, particularly as many employers are wondering about incentives to encourage employees to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.
To Vaccinate Or Not To Vaccinate…That Is The Question
As we enter flu season (in the midst of a national spike in COVID-19 cases), and it now appears that a COVID-19 vaccine is on the horizon, employers are struggling with whether they should require employees to be vaccinated for seasonal influenza and/or COVID-19 infection.
Request For Medical Examination Was Permissible Under ADA After Positive Drug Test Result
A federal court in Indiana dismissed an employee’s claim that his employer did not have the right to request a medical examination after he tested positive for drugs and subsequently admitted that he was taking numerous prescription medications that could create a safety risk.
EEOC Issues Guidance on Opioid Addiction in Employment
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission issued two technical assistance documents on Aug. 5, 2020, addressing accommodation issues under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) for employees who use opioid medications or may be addicted to opioids.
Class Action Suit Claims ADA Requires Public Accommodation to Prevent Spread of COVID-19 at Facility
Despite significant legal obstacles, on May 4, 2020, a group of plaintiffs filed a class action complaint alleging the Queens Adult Care Center (QACC) violated Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (Title III) and its precursor, Section 504 of Rehabilitation Act (Section 504), by failing to provide a level of care to safeguard their health and safety at its assisted living facility during the COVID-19 pandemic.
EEOC Opines on COVID-19 Testing by Employers
The EEOC’s most recent update provides an answer to the following question: “May an employer administer a COVID-19 test (a test to detect the presence of the COVID-19 virus) before permitting employees to enter the workplace?”
Navigating Employer Obligations to Provide Employees with Masks, Face Coverings
As the CDC continues to study COVID-19, the agency is regularly updating guidance on precautionary measures to further prevent the spread across the United States. The agency has expanded its recommended precautions to include “wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where social distancing measures are difficult to maintain”.