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The ADA Celebrates 25 Years

Twenty-five years ago in July, the Americans with Disabilities Act was made into law in order to provide clear standards to address the discrimination against those with disabilities.

The ADA allows individuals with disabilities to make a claim of discrimination against their employer provided that they:

  • Have a disability as defined by the ADA
  • Are qualified to perform the essential functions of the job, with or without accommodation
  • Had an adverse action taken against them by an employer because of their disability, or had an employer fail to make a reasonable accommodation for them

At first, the most serious obstacle the ADA faced was defining disability. In early claims, Federal courts rarely took into account the actions taken against the employee and instead focused on whether or not the employee was actually disabled. The interpretation of disability became so narrow that in 2008, it became necessary to amend the ADA.

The ADAs definition of disability has three elements: (a) a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, (b) a record of such impairment, or (c) being regarded as having such impairment. The changes in 2008 made it clear that major life activities could be anything, not just those central to everyday life, like seeing or hearing. It also made it clear that a disability does not have to be permanent or long term.

If you have been the target of workplace harassment, discrimination or unfair termination, Bouchillon, Crossan & Colburn, L.C. represents clients in federal court and before the EEOC, MSPB and in state and union grievance hearings.

Our attorneys have more than 40 years dedicated to giving clients the attention, advice, support and empowerment they need to effectively meet their goals. We are committed to the principle that all persons shall have equal justice under the law. Call Bouchillon, Crossan & Colburn, L.C. at 304.523.8451 or contact us online to schedule an appointment.

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