Rights of Employees
The Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination ("LAD") and the New York Human Rights Act ("NYHRL") each make it illegal for an employer to discriminate against an employee because of a disability. In other words, if you have a physical or mental disability that does not prevent you from performing your job, then your employer cannot fire you, demote you, suspend you, harass you or otherwise discriminate against you because of it.
At Rabner Baumgart Ben-Asher & Nirenberg, our New Jersey disability discrimination lawyers negotiate and litigate claims under each of those laws. We also advise current employees who are experiencing discrimination at their jobs to help them obtain reasonable accommodations and maximize the chances they can remain employed despite the discrimination they are experiencing.
In both New York and New Jersey, a physical or mental impairment does not necessarily have to be severe or debilitating to be considered a disability. As a result, while disabilities that cause blindness, hearing loss, paralysis or confinement to a wheelchair are considered disabilities, a wide variety of other conditions such as cancer, heart conditions, learning disabilities, depression and anxiety also are protected by anti-discrimination laws.Prohibiting Discrimination Based on Past and Perceived Disabilities
As our disability discrimination attorneys in New Jersey can confirm, state and federal law also prohibit discrimination based on the false belief that an employee has a disability (a perceived disability). Similarly, it is unlawful to treat someone worse because they have a record of having a disability in the past (a record of disability). In other words, your employer cannot discriminate against you because it incorrectly believes you have a disability because you previously had a disability.
Accordingly, for example, conditions that are in remission such as cancer, multiple sclerosis, diabetes or hypertension are all legally protected disabilities. Similarly, episodic medical conditions like epilepsy, post-traumatic stress disorder (“PTSD”) and asthma can fall within the protection of the law.
It is unlawful to discriminate against an employee because of an actual, perceived, or record of a disability. If you have been the victim of disability discrimination at work, your rights have been violated. Please feel free to contact us online or call us at our New Jersey office at (201) 777-2250 to schedule an appointment with one of our experienced New Jersey disability discrimination lawyers.Employees Are Entitled to Reasonable Accommodations for Their Disabilities
Employees with disabilities also are legally entitled to reasonable accommodations from their employers to allow them to perform the essential functions of their jobs. Your employment law rights may have been violated if your employer refused to provide you a reasonable accommodation for your physical or mental impairment, or fired or took another adverse employment against you because you requested one. Additional information is available on our reasonable accommodations for disabilities page.Employers Cannot Retaliate Against You
In addition, it is unlawful for your employer to retaliate against you because you objected about unlawful discrimination, including disability discrimination. This protects you whether you objected because you, or someone else, was the victim of discrimination.
Employers Are Prohibited From Harassing You Because of a Disability
As with every other form of unlawful discrimination, it is unlawful for your employer to harass you because you have a disability. For example, it can be unlawful for your boss to tease you about your disability, make jokes about your physical or mental limitations, or to go out of the way to make it difficult for you to do your job because you have a disability.
If you have experienced harassment at work because you have a disability, or any other form of disability discrimination at work in New Jersey or New York, we can help.
We welcome you to contact one of our disability discrimination attorneys in New Jersey to learn more about your legal rights. Our telephone number is (201) 777-2250.