Denied changing status for medical reason

I am a full time employee and recently have
had some medical issues. My doctors feel that
I need to cut back my hours in order to try and
improve my health. I have requested my
employer for a change of status from full time
to part time along with a medical letter.
Can they deny me the change of status?

Asked on October 23, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, New Jersey


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Yes, they can refuse to do this. An employer must make a "reasonable accommodation" to an employee's medical condition or disability. A reasonable accommodation is one that lets the employee do his or her full job. Limiting or reducing the employee's hours is not considered a reasonable accommodation because 1) it is, by definition, not helping the employee do his/her full job (it is rather reducing the job); and 2) it can be excessively or unreasonably expensive for the employer, who may have to hire someone else or pay overtime to another employee to make up for the reduction in hours. So yes--the employer may deny you this.

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