California Disability Discrimination Attorney

The Rankin Law Firm is dedicated to protecting the employment rights of disabled individuals throughout California. We are committed to holding businesses accountable for disability discrimination and treating our clients with the dignity and respect they deserve. 

Whether you have been denied a disability accommodation or discriminated against because of your disability, we have the skills and experience to protect your rights. When you consult us you will have peace of mind knowing that our team is in your corner.  Please contact our office today to speak with an experienced disability discrimination attorney.

Disability Discrimination Attorneys Fighting for the Rights of Disabled Workers

While some businesses avoid hiring disabled workers because of misconceptions about their productivity or reluctance to provide accommodations, any adverse employment decision based on an individual’s disability is unlawful. 

At The Rankin Law Firm, we leverage our knowledge of applicable state and federal anti-discrimination laws to fight for clients inside and outside of the courtroom. For instance, under the federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), disabled individuals are protected against discrimination in the workplace. 

The ADA prohibits employers from making employment decisions (e.g. hiring, firing, compensating, promoting, training, benefits, or any other condition of employment) based on an individual’s disability. The law also requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations to disabled workers, such as providing special equipment and/or modifying work schedules or job assignments. 

The ADA only applies to employers with 15 or more employees and also requires claimants to file a charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) before proceeding with a lawsuit. 

At the same time, workers have stronger legal protections under the California Fair Employment Act (CFEHA), which covers businesses with 5 or more employees and specifically prohibits discrimination based on physical disabilities, mental disabilities, and medical conditions. This law allows you to file a claim with the Department of Fair Housing and Employment seeking an immediate right to sue letter. 

Our firm has extensive experience representing disabled individuals in administrative proceedings as well as in state and federal courts. You can rest assured that we will always work in your best interests and pursue all legal remedies available to you. While many disability discrimination claims can be resolved through settlement negotiations, we are fully prepared to litigate if necessary.

What is a disability?

The ADA defines a disability as a physical or mental impairment that limits a person’s ability to perform daily life activities, such as:

  • Walking
  • Seeing
  • Hearing
  • Speaking
  • Sitting
  • Standing
  • Lifting
  • Performing manual tasks
  • Learning
  • Breathing
  • Taking care of oneself

To be covered under the ADA, the impairment must be considered permanent — temporary conditions are not protected disabilities. Also, amendments to the law added major bodily functions to this list, such as functions of the digestive, neurological, respiratory, endocrine, and immune systems. 

Moreover, the ADA and the CFEHA (1) protect individuals who are currently disabled or have a history of impairment and (2) prohibit employers from discriminating against those who the employer perceives to be disabled, regardless of whether the employee is actually disabled. 

What is a reasonable accommodation?

Employers are required to make adjustments or modifications to a position or workplace so that a disabled worker can carry out his or her duties. Reasonable accommodation may include:

  • Transferring the employee
  • Offering a flexible work schedule
  • Granting leaves from work to obtain medical treatment
  • Removing non-essential job duties 
  • Making the workplace accessible 
  • Providing a reader or interpreter for a blind or hearing-impaired employee 

An accommodation does not need to be provided if doing so would cause undue hardship to the employer. Undue hardship means that the accommodation would be too costly, extensive, or disruptive to the business.

What is disability discrimination?

Disability discrimination in the workplace occurs when a disabled employee is subjected to an adverse employment action (e.g. terminated, disciplined, denied reasonable accommodation) due to her or his actual or perceived disability. This form of discrimination can also occur during the hiring process when an employer refuses to hire a disabled applicant. Finally, harassment of disabled employees is also unlawful. Harassment involves offensive comments, conduct, or displays against a disabled individual that are severe or pervasive enough to create a hostile environment. 

If you have been fired, demoted, denied a reasonable accommodation, or discriminated against in any other way because of your disability, you probably have concerns about your financial future and your well-being. We will address those concerns by providing you with informed representation and caring, efficient service. While no two disability discrimination claims are the same, you may be awarded damages that include reinstatement, back pay, benefits, attorneys’ fees, and costs.

Contact Our Experienced California Disability Discrimination Attorneys

At The Rankin Law Firm, we have a well-earned reputation as dedicated advocates of the disabled. If you have been subjected to disability discrimination or harassment, don’t go it alone. We will make your case our cause and fight to protect your employment rights. Please contact our office today to schedule a consultation.