Family & Medical Leave

California Medical Leave Lawyers

Disabled workers are a protected class under California’s Fair Employment & Housing Act (FEHA), as well as the federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). These laws require companies to provide reasonable accommodations for workers who suffer from either temporary or permanent disabilities. One of the most common accommodations requested by employees is a temporary medical leave of absence to recover from a particular disability. These are often referred to as “FMLA Leaves”.  In California, the California Family Rights Act also provides additional medical leave for certain workers.

Medical leave discrimination claims cover a wide range of possible situations, including:

  • Failure to accommodate medical leaves of absence
  • Failure to promote workers because they have a disability and need leaves of absence
  • Refusing to provide reasonable accommodations to assist disabled workers perform their job functions
  • Discharging a disabled worker for requesting a medical leave of absence

You Must Be a Qualified Individual with a Disability

For a worker to qualify to make a claim of disability discrimination based upon California’s Fair Employment & Housing Act, he or she must be considered a “qualified individual with a disability.” This requires that the worker must be able to perform the essential functions of the job, either with our without a reasonable accommodation.

In determining whether or not a worker is “disabled” for the purposes of California law, the law requires that the medical condition impacts a “major life activity”. However, the employee’s job and ability to work is considered a “major life activity” under California law.  So, even if the disability doesn’t impact many areas of the employee’s day to day life, if it affects employment, it is generally considered a disability for the purposes of California law.

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