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Americans with Disabilities Act  (ADA)

V.  What Is "A Qualified Individual?"

To be protected under the ADA, a person with a disability must also be "qualified" for the job.

"Qualified" means that:

  • a person has the education, employment experience, skills or licenses the employer legitimately requires for the position and that he or she can perform the "essential functions" (the specific duties) of the job with or without the help of a reasonable accommodation.

An employer cannot refuse to hire, promote or otherwise discriminate against a person with a disability because his or her disability prevents him or her from performing duties that are not essential to the job.

For review: The ADA: Your Employment Rights as an Individual With a Disability

VI.  What May an Employer Ask About My Medical Condition?

If you do not ask for a reasonable accommodation, an employer may not ask you about your disability, and you are not required to tell your employer about your disability.

An employer may ask you if you can perform the job you are applying for. An employer can also ask you to describe or to demonstrate how, with or without reasonable accommodation, you will perform the duties of the job.

An employer may only ask you to take a medical exam:

  • after the employer has offered you a job,
       - and -
  • if all applicants for this job category have to take an exam.

An employer may not refuse to hire you based on the results of the medical exam unless the exam shows that you would not be medically able to perform the essential functions of the job with or without an accommodation.

If you need a reasonable accommodation to perform the essential functions of your job, you will have to tell your employer about your disability. You will also, if the employer asks for it, need to provide evidence of your medical condition.

NextWhat Is a "Reasonable Accommodation?"

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