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Long Island Disability Discrimination Lawyers

Disability Discrimination

New York Disability Discrimination Attorney Representing Long Island Employees

Disability discrimination can occur anytime an employer (or potential employer) treats a job applicant or an employee unfavorably as a result of that person’s known disability, because that person has any type of physical or mental impairment that is expected to last six months or longer, or because the employer “perceives” that an applicant or employee has a disability.

According to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). Employers cannot treat applicants or employees with visible or invisible disabilities unfavorably, and they cannot advertise jobs that unlawfully discriminate against people who have documented disabilities. In addition, the law requires an employer to provide a disabled employee with a reasonable accommodation as long as the accommodation would not cause any undue hardship to the employer, which the EEOC defines as an accommodation that would “cause significant difficulty or expense.”

Whether you have been discriminated against on the basis of your disability, or you have been treated unfavorably at work due to your relationship with another person who has a disability, you should seek advice from one of our experienced Long Island disability discrimination lawyers. Nobody should face adverse treatment in the workplace or job application process as a result of their disability.

Defining Long Island Disability Discrimination

In Long Island workplaces, disability discrimination is unlawful under both federal and state law. In terms of federal law, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) says that it is “unlawful to discriminate in employment against a qualified individual with a disability.” The ADA defines a disability as “a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a major life activity.” Under state law, the New York Human Rights Law (NYHRL) prohibits disability discrimination in the workplace.

The definition of a disability that qualifies for ADA protection can be a bit confusing in some cases. In order to be eligible for protection under the ADA, you must have (or you must have a history of) a condition that results in “substantial impairment,” which is understood to be “one that significantly limits or restricts a major life activity such as hearing, seeing, speaking, walking, breathing, performing manual tasks, caring for oneself, learning, or working.”

Disability discrimination can take many different forms in a Long Island workplace, including but not limited to:

  • Intentional prejudice based on a person’s disability;
  • Attempt to deny a person access to a job due to concerns about the disability;
  • Advertising for workers without certain physical limitations due to disabilities that the employer believes would make it difficult but not impossible for such people to do the job;
  • Having a “no pets” policy in the workplace that expressly includes any service animals for employees;
  • Offering promotions or certain benefits to employees who are not disabled;
  • Offering better shifts or job responsibilities to employees who do not have a documented disability;
  • Asking job applicants to describe their physical or mental impairments in a job interview;
  • Unlawfully denying reasonable accommodations for an existing employee;
  • Making slurs or derogatory comments about an employee who has a disability; or
  • Terminating an employee because of his or her disability.

Queens and Long Island

Labor Employment Lawyers in Queens and Long Island

Advocating on Behalf of
Employees

At Ricotta & Marks, P.C., we represent employees in a broad spectrum of legal matters, including:

Harassment

According to the NY Department of Human Rights, employers can be held responsible for sexual harassment in the workplace in the following circumstances:
If the harassment was the fault of a co-owner, manager, or supervisor the employer is responsible, regardless of whether or not they knew it was occurring
If the harassment occurred among regular employees, the employer can be held responsible if they knew about it, should have known about it, or failed to have a sexual harassment policy in place.
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Employee Discrimination

Our lawyers are prepared to represent clients who face any type of employment discrimination such as:
Gender discrimination
Marital status discrimination
Pregnancy discrimination and FMLA violations
Sexual orientation discrimination, including transgender discrimination and harassment
Age discrimination
Race or national origin discrimination
Disability discrimination
Religious discrimination
Criminal record discrimination
Violations of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA)
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Wage & Hour Disputes

We handle many cases that involve wage and hour disputes, including people in certain industries who often fall victim to these situations as well as instances involving:
Unpaid overtime
Under-the-table compensation
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Education Law

New York City teachers face challenges inside and outside the classroom. When they face the possibility of losing their jobs, they deserve representation by experienced attorneys.

At Ricotta & Marks, P.C., employment law is our sole focus. We have represented teachers facing a broad spectrum of legal issues and we are committed to protecting teachers’ rights. To learn more, please do not hesitate to contact us and schedule a free initial and confidential consultation at our Queens or Long Island offices today.

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Wrongful Termination

Even in an ‘At Will’ Work Situation, You Have the Right to Work. Employers will always claim that they had a valid reason to lay off or fire an employee. But in many circumstances, this is just disguised discrimination of one form or another. Continued employment and advancement is frequently based on performance reviews. If you have a perfect record, then suddenly go from perfect to pariah, it may be a case of your supervisor or employer giving a negative review in order to have an excuse to remove you from your position or deny a promotion.

Sometimes these “Jekyll and Hyde” switches occur because a superior learned something about a subordinate that then caused him or her to have a negative bias, like the employee was of a certain religion or sexual orientation. Sometimes the reason is more obvious, like a bias against people of a certain race, being male or female, a woman becoming pregnant or people with disabilities.

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Other Employment Law Issues

As a full-service employment law firm, we can also help you with:
Labor and union representation
Mediation and arbitration matters
Employment contract negotiations and matters
Employer defense
Our New York employment attorneys are dedicated to ensuring that all workers have the opportunity to pursue successful careers, and experience workplaces that are free of harassment or other situations that create tension.
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Long Island Disability Discrimination Can Take the Form of Harassment

Disability harassment can include offensive comments about a person’s disability, jokes about disabilities, or other harassing behaviors. It is critical to understand, however, that a mere comment in the workplace is typically not enough to constitute unlawful harassment. For a person to file a harassment claim, the behavior usually must be either so frequent or serious that it creates a hostile work environment.

Employers Must Provide Reasonable Accommodations

Employers on Long Island are required to provide reasonable accommodations to employees with disabilities. Reasonable accommodation should be tailored to the specific needs of the employee. Examples of reasonable accommodations might include but certainly are not limited to the following:

  • Provider a reader for an employee who is blind;
  • Providing a sign language interpreter for an employee who is hearing impaired;
  • Make the workplace wheelchair accessible;
  • Providing reserved parking for the employee;
  • Altering the format of training materials;
  • Adjusting workplace equipment; or
  • Allowing the employee to have a flexible work schedule.

Contact a Long Island Disability Discrimination Lawyer Today

When you are experiencing disability discrimination in the workplace or your employer refuses to provide you with a reasonable accommodation under the ADA, you should know that one of our experienced Long Island disability discrimination attorneys can assist you. You have rights under state and federal law, and we can help to ensure that your workplace is a safe and healthy one that is compliant with federal and state laws concerning disability protections. Contact Ricotta & Marks, P.C. online or call our firm today at 347-464-8694.

Ricotta Marks

Ricotta & Marks, P.C.

We understand that your situation is urgent. Our New York employment discrimination attorneys will respond to your questions and concerns as quickly as possible.

Contact Our Office347.464.8694