Qualifying for Disability

Dear Brian,
How do I know if I’m a qualified individual with a disability?

For the employee to be eligible to make a claim of disability discrimination under the ADA or FEHA, he must be a “qualified individual with a disability.” This means that he must be able to do the job. For instance, a person with no hands would not be qualified to be a typist. (However, see below discussion on “reasonable accommodation”.) If the employer didn’t give him the job, it wouldn’t be discrimination. It’s just that the person simply isn’t qualified.

“With a disability” means that the worker is actually disabled. For an injury, disease, or their ailment to be a “disability” under the law, it must “substantially limit one or more major life activities.” A mere annoyance is not enough. The disability must actually interfere with a person’s life.

In determining whether or not a person actually has a disability, the Courts pay close attention to whether or not the ailment affects the person’s job and ability to earn a living. So, even if the disability doesn’t affect most areas of life, if it affects the person’s employment, it is more likely to be considered a disability. A qualified Los Angeles labor lawyer can help you with your discrimination case.