If I was fired due to my narcolepsy, is there anything that can be done as narcolepsy is considered a disability?

Right now I’m sitting with a clinical diagnosis of narcolepsy. When I have a flair up I have to call in sick. Yesterday my employment was terminated due to this. I will soon have the full diagnosis for narcolepsy; my employer was aware of this.

Asked on November 4, 2015 under Employment Labor Law, Arizona

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Having a disability does *not* mean that you can't be fired due to behavior, such as excessive absences from work, even if that behavior is linked to your disability. While an employer must make certain "reasonable accommodations" for disabilities, they are not required to let employees call in sick or miss work, except and only to the extent that the absences are covered by the use of PTO or by FMLA leave (assuming the employer is large enough to be coverd by FMLA, and the employee is eligible for it); reasonable accommodations are minor changes to rules or the provision of not-too-expensive assistive devices that let the employee work all of his or her hours and do his or her job. If you've been calling in sick beyond the amount of sick leave you have, you may be fired for that reason.


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