Is it legal?

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Is it legal?

I was fired from my job for being on a
methadone mantinence program. I was with
the company for 7 years, my boss knew I
started the program last year. I think he’s just
using it for a reason to get rid of me.

Asked on September 18, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, New Jersey

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Speak to the New Jersey Division on Civil Rights (DCR): you may have an employment discrimination claim. Addiction can be considered a disabiliity; employers are prohibited from discriminating against (e.g. firing) someone for having a disability. An employer may terminate someone for their at-work *actions*, even if such are based in a disability, like addiction: e.g. if you used drugs at work, or had performance issues at work due to the use of drugs, you could be terminated for that criminal act or that poor performance--but again, you can't be terminated simply for having a condition or disability, or the treatment you undergo for it, as long as said treatment, etc. does not impact work. So if you did nothing wrong at work but believe you were terminated just for being in the program due to an addiction, that may be illegal disability-based employment discrimination and, if so, the DCR may be able to help you.


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