If my employer is harassing me because I forget things due to my pain medication, what legal recourse do I have?

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If my employer is harassing me because I forget things due to my pain medication, what legal recourse do I have?

My employer is harassing me because I am sometimes forgetful and says that it must be due to my pain medication. The ADA doesn’t apply since we only have 5 employees. He has stated several times, “If I had known about your medications and your medical history, I would have never hired you.” He is constantly grilling me about what medications I am taking and telling me that I must be taking them incorrectly. Although I do take medication, as prescribed for depression (he is aware of the diagnosis), the doctor has adjusted it so that I no longer take it until after work. Do I have any legal recourse?

Asked on August 24, 2010 under Employment Labor Law, Arizona

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

The Americans Against Disability Act is a Federal Statute and you are correct: an employer with less than 15 employees does not have to follow the standards set forth in the act.  However, that does not mean that your state does not have laws that mirror the act on a smaller basis and that the general civil and criminal statutes in your state do not apply.  Contact your state Department of Labor and speak with someone regarding the situation that exists in your office.  Make sure that your medical condition is well documented at your office as well.  Keep copies of all correspondence sent and all doctor's notes and appointments.  When he asks about your medications answer his questions in writing.  And seek legal consultation in your area should this continue.  Good luck.


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