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THE AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT

The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) is found at Title 42, United States Code, Sections 12101 and following. The ADA prohibits disability discrimination in employment, public accommodations, state and local government services, transportation and telecommunications. Title I of the ADA governs equal employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities. It prohibits discrimination by employers of 15 or more employees against a "qualified individual with a disability" with regard to (1) job application procedures; (2) hiring; (3) advancement; (4) discharge; (5) employee compensation; (6) job training; and (7) other terms, conditions, and privileges of employment.

The ADA defines a "qualified individual" as an individual who has:

(1) a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more of the major life activities of such individual; or

(2) a person who has a record (i.e., medical history, work history) of such an impairment; or

(3) a person who is regarding or thought of as having such an impairment

The three prong test required by the ADA in a particular job situation are (1) what are the essential functions of the job; AND (2a) can the employee perform those essential functions without some accommodation or (2b) if the employee cannot perform the essential functions of the job without accommodation, can a reasonable accommodation be made that will allow the employee to perform the essential job functions. What is reasonable depends upon the circumstances of each case and includes such factors as the size and wealth of the company, the cost of making the accommodation, the impact upon other employees, etc.

The ADA is enforced by the U. S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") and anyone desiring to file a charge of discrimination under the ADA must file a charge with the EEOC within 300 days of the date of discrimination.

For more information for an employer:

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For information for an employee with a disability, go to

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Akers & Boswell, PA
2161 Palm Beach Lakes Boulevard, Suite 407
West Palm Beach, Florida 33409
(561) 547 6300 - (561) 828 9212 FAX