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FMLA or ADA? New York

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  • FMLA or ADA? New York

    I have an employee who has a physician's note asking for limited office duties and allowing 2 days a week to be worked from home due to high stress and excessive headaches. But there is no DX on the doctor's note. Can the employer demand a diagnosis from the dr. and completed FMLA certification?

    I understand I can ask this person about a LOA or FMLA, but at the end of FMLA I may be in the same position-they may still need more time off/or the intermittent work schedule.

    The orgnaization does not want to terminate this individual, but if FMLA is exhausted and the employee continues to need the special accomodation, what are the employer's options? (other than termination)

    At what point does this become an ADA issue? Or is it to begin with??

    Please help

  • #2
    Not everything falls under both FMLA and the ADA. They are different laws, with different eligibility requirements, and different criteria.

    It would fall under the ADA only if the medical condition is such that it meets the definition of a qualifying disabilty.
    The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.


    • #3
      I would refrain from seeking a diagnosis alone. For one, it won't help you. If this person is stating they need this as an ongoing accommodation, then yes, you are entitled to know more details under ADA.

      Since FMLA does apply, start by getting the certification from the doctor. That should give you some idea at least what you are dealing with.
      I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.


      • #4
        Thank You for your help!


        • #5
          By the way, you stated that at the end of FMLA you would be in the same position.

          No, you wouldn't. If the employee needs more than 12 weeks in a year, they can be termed.
          Not everything that makes you mad, sad or uncomfortable is legally actionable.

          I am not now nor ever was an attorney.

          Any statements I make are based purely upon my personal experiences and research which may or may not be accurate in a court of law.


          • #6
            Right- but the powers that be- do not want to terminate this employee. That is where my dilemma comes from really.


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