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What is a Reasonable Accommodation under the ADA? Important Information for Employers

The Americans with Disabilities Act requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations to qualified individuals with disabilities, unless it would cause undue hardship. The act defines an accommodation as “any change in the work environment or in the way things are customarily done that enables an individual with a disability to enjoy equal employment opportunities.”

The ADA lists three types of reasonable accommodations:

  • Modifying or adjusting a job application process to enable a qualified applicant with a disability to be considered for a desired position.
  • Modifications or adjustments that enable a person with a disability to perform the essential functions of a position. This can include job restructuring, modified work schedules and acquiring or modifying equipment.
  • Modifications or adjustments that enable a person with a disability to enjoy the same employment benefits as employees who do not have disabilities. This could include providing readers or interpreters, altering training materials or changing certain policies.

A modification is reasonable if it appears to be reasonable or feasible on its face. The accommodation should be tailored to the individual requesting it and should allow the person to perform his or her job. A reasonable accommodation should also enable an applicant with a disability to participate equally in the job application and consideration process.

If you are concerned about your business’s ADA compliance, contact an experienced labor and employment law attorney in Washington D.C.

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