What should I do
Get Legal Help Today
Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save
Secured with SHA-256 Encryption
What should I do
I am a month away from passing my probation period at work. For the past 7 months, I have been placed on a permanent midnight shift 10 pm-8 am. I started having health issues related to sleep. My doctor gave me a letter asking for my employer to place me on a morning shift. I turned the letter in to my employer. They took 2 weeks to respond. They advised a denial of my request for a shift change. This is because it causes an
Asked on February 9, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Florida
SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney
Answered 6 years ago | Contributor
There are two issues here.
The first is if you actually have a medical condition which they have to accommodate. An employer is NOT required to accommodate any/every health-related complaint of employees; they only need to accommodate ones which qualify as "disabilities," which mean they significantly impair a major life function, are not readily or quickly remedied, *and* flow from some recognized or provable medical condition. Having ill effects from a night shift is not a disability requiring accommodation unless 1) there is a medical condition constituting a disability underlying it; and 2) the effects are more than the general tiredness or sleep issues which essentially anyone would have from working that shift. If there is no particular medical condition tied to this and you're essentially just feeling the natural effects of your shift, the employer does not need to accommodate you, the same way they would not need to accommodate an employee who is complaining about work stress or being overworked.
Second, if the shift change would be an undue or unreasonable burden: if it is, they are not required to grant it. Giving you a reasonable accommodation does not require them to "bump" other employees for you, particularly if those other employees have seniority over you or would in turn suffer the same effects from your shift that you do (since then the company is simply trading one affected person for another).
From what you write, therefore, this may not be a case where you are entitled to an accommodation. That does not mean that you should not speak to your union representative or ADA coordinator--or even, if you feel strongly and do not get any help, contact the federal EEOC, which oversees the disability-discrimination laws. It does mean that you need to reconcile yourself to the fact that you may not get the relief you want.
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 AttorneyPages.com 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.