Exclusively Employment Law

10 Things to Know About Reasonable Accommodation (Part 1)

by | Oct 6, 2020 | Reasonable Accommodation

Originally Published on October 6, 2020; Revised in September 2022

Under California law, employers must provide a reasonable accommodation to employees with a physical or mental disability unless the reasonable accommodation would cause an undue hardship on the employer. Below are ten things that you should know about reasonable accommodation under California law:

No. 1: The scope of an employee’s right to a reasonable accommodation is generally broader under California law than it is under federal law.

No. 2: Generally speaking, an employer is not liable under California law for its “failure” to accommodate an employee’s disability if the employer had no knowledge of the employee’s disability.

No. 3: Examples of a reasonable accommodation include, but are not limited to, job restructuring, reassignment to a vacant position, and part-time or modified work schedules.

No. 4: An employer is not required to reassign an employee to another position if there are no vacant positions for which the employee is qualified.

No. 5: An employer’s duty to provide a reasonable accommodation does not require the employer to create a new job; or to move another employee from one position to a different position; or to promote the disabled employee.

No. 6: A reasonable accommodation can include providing the employee with paid leave or unpaid leave for treatment, as long as it is likely that the employee will be able to perform his/her job functions at the end of such leave.

No. 7: California does not entitle an employee to the “best” accommodation. Instead, an employee is only entitled to a reasonable accommodation.

No. 8: California courts have acknowledged that even a single failure to make a reasonable accommodation can have tragic consequences for an employee who is not accommodated.

No. 9: When a disabled employee requests reassignment as an accommodation, California law requires the employer to offer the employee “comparable” or “lower graded” vacant positions for which the employee is qualified.

No. 10: Although employees may be entitled to reassignment as a reasonable accommodation under California law, job applicants are not entitled to reassignment as a reasonable accommodation.

If you have questions about reasonable accommodations under California law, call ((916) 612-0326) or email ([email protected]) Finley Employment Law today. We serve clients throughout California, including Sacramento, Roseville, Davis, Folsom, and Elk Grove.

The information in this blog post is for general informational and advertising purposes only and is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. Instead, you should speak with a California employment attorney for advice regarding your individual situation.