Under the law, employers are required to provide a reasonable accommodation to an employee when that employee suffers from a disability. Courts have held that a reasonable accommodation can include job restructuring or modified work schedules. However, every employer is protected against accommodations that would impose an undue hardship on the operation of its business.
One issue that has been decided by the courts is whether it is reasonable for a disabled employee to work from home. In support of that request, employees tend to focus on the fact that they may have physical disabilities that require them to stay at home or make it difficult for them to travel to and from work. Courts have held, however, that a request to work from home is not reasonable accommodation. This is because an employer is not required to accommodate a disability by allowing a disabled employee to work alone, without supervision, at home. In general, courts have relied on the belief that being present in the workplace is an essential element of most jobs. As technology evolves, however, there may be some case in which an employee may be able to prove that he or she is able to work from home and still perform all of the essential duties of his or her position.
If you have questions about reasonable accommodations in the workplace, contact the law firm of Winegar, Wilhelm, Glynn & Roemersma to speak with one of our experienced attorneys.
THE FOREGOING IS INTENDED TO BE A GENERAL DISCUSSION OF THE LAW AND IS NOT INTENDED TO BE CONSTRUED AS LEGAL ADVICE. IF YOU HAVE A SPECIFIC QUESTION, PLEASE CONTACT OUR OFFICE AND SPEAK WITH AN ATTORNEY.