Can my salary be reduceddue to my disability?

UPDATED: Sep 6, 2011

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Can my salary be reduceddue to my disability?

I have a manager who truly gets pleasure yelling at and belittling the “slower, older, and people who have some sort of mental illness”. A couple weeks ago, the day after we had the earthquake, I made the attempt to work (I have anxiety issues with PTSD, and OCD); I was having a hard time coping. This manager asked me what was wrong so I told her. She yelled at me to get over it and grow up. I calmly finished with the customers I had, clocked out, and went home. I called my district manager on my way home to explain the situation; I did not want to lose my job over this. As far as I understand, I was not fired, more suspended, but in order for me to return to work I had to take a pay cut. I have been working there for 7 years and am a valued employee. They were previously aware of my illnesses. They have unfortunately had effect on my job in the past. I explained how the earthquake triggered serious symptoms yet I was making my best effort to work despite them, until I was yelled at. I don’t know what to do; this manager should not be talking to anyone the way she does.

Asked on September 6, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Virginia


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

There is no simple answer to your query; you should discuss the matter with an employment attorney. Some principals: a company may not discriminate against an employee with a disability; however, not discriminating consists merely of providing reasonable acccomodations, such as some change in how a job is done (letting someone sit more, if the job can be done sitting, rather than stand) or some assistive technology (e.g. voice recognition software for those with visual or typing impairment). A reasonable accomodation is not too expensive or disruptive to the employer. If an employee simply cannot do a job, even with some accomodation, however, the employer may be justified in not employing him or her--or in transferring him or her to a job which he or sshe can do (or reducing hours), even if that means a pay cut. Thus, it depends on the circumstances, and you need to discuss those circumstances in detail with an employment attorney.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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