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rnorth512

Got Fired After Telling My Boss I had a "Medical Disability"

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Title says it all. Had a hard time showing up on time or at all due to new meds. Never spent more than my accrued time, so I wasn't out very frequently.

Fired the next day after giving him a doctors note for my absence and telling him I had a "medical disability". Said I would try my best. He agreed.

Any thoughts are appreciated because I just read the disabilities act and I'm ready to lawyer up.

 

 

Thoughts?

 

 

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If you can, definitely get a lawyer. If you work in a state with at-will employment, it can be really hard to prove that it was discrimination, so good documentation and a good lawyer are important.

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Keep us posted on what happens. This happened to me in the past, conveniently right after I returned from a legitimate/approved medical leave (I had been hospitalized, but didn't disclose my MI condition or treatment to them). I was so upset I could not fathom trying to read a ton of fine print about what my rights are, or even find money to pay for a lawyer. Whatever. I had been a good consistent worker there for 6 years. Never had any kind of "write ups" or performance issues. Was given a severance...They said would always give me a good reference (probably just to placate me). This happened during one of the worst times/episodes of my life.

Yep that's how US companies roll. You can wear the wrong color tie and get fired for it, it's so easy for them to do without really justifying anything.

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Most workers (US) are "at will" employees and can be let go for no reason at all. Unemployment insurance is a separate issue, there it matters what the reason was for seperation.

 

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@notloki True. But isn't it illegal (IF) you disclose that you have a medical condition/disability (needing reasonable accommodation for appointments or treatment, etc) and then your employer fires you, basically because of that reason? In my case, no, I did not disclose that info upfront...however, I was "let go" after they had agreed to accommodate me with a part-time schedule.  I could see certain scenarios could be grounds for wrongful termination, no?

I was also afraid that I wouldn't qualify for unemployment insurance, and also lose my health insurance (not being able to afford COBRA) however, my employer agreed that I could list "layoff due to budgetary issues" so receiving unemployment wasn't an issue. I guess it's just a shady area to me what a person's rights are if they disclose they need medical accommodation and then they are immediately fired (wrongfully terminated) and then cannot receive unemployment compensation...

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The problem is proving that they fired you because of your medical condition. They can easily say that they already planned to fire you because of your attendance or performance prior to you disclosing, or that they planned to lay you off for any number of reasons. Especially since you and the employer did agree to list it as a "layoff due to budgetary issues," you'd have a very hard time arguing in a legal setting that it was a wrongful termination. I'm not saying that it's right, or that the actual motive wasn't discriminatory, but employment law in the US favors the employer in most cases. If you have the means, you can definitely consult with a lawyer though to see what their thoughts are. 

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Thanks @thunderThis is what I thought. Laws always favor the employer to an extreme in the US. Do all companies (large and small) make you sign the "At Will employment" waiver before you start working? I guess this is standard now. I just hate how hypocritical companies are with that HR line everywhere "we do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, or any other basis of discrimination prohibited by law. We happily welcome DIVERSE applicants!" yada yada yada...BS.

Then they ask you like twice (once on written application form) and then in the interview if you have any disability, illness (like anyone would ever want to raise THAT red flag!) I know some orgs have hiring quotas (state/gov) that track number of women/men employees, and ethnicity for diversity/equal opportunity, but are they are fined if they fail?? I guess they consider any form of disability a major liability/$$$...that plus most of the Trumpets in the US believe that "all shootings happen because of the mentally ill. People with mental illness should all be locked up & institutionalized.."  but lets go and cut mental health funding and facilities even more. Don't even get me started on that one. Surprised no one has posted about that here yet!

Edited by Blahblah

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I had a shady situation like this once. I was a temp at a call center for a health insurance company. The place (not sure if it was the place I was temping at, or the temp agency itself) had a 0-day absence policy. You could NOT be sick or stay out even 1 day. But 2 other people did, and one day while working I felt horrible anxiety - the crippling curl-up-in-a-ball kind. I felt like I was starting to go manic and couldn't focus on work so I asked the manager there if I could go home early, because I am bipolar and starting to become symptomatic. She said sure.

I got a phone call from the temp agency an hour later saying to come get my things, they were done with me. I wasn't sure if it was the policy (though they should give reasonable accommodation if I have a disability right?) or the fact I was telling them I have bipolar. It would have been too much of a grey area to fight it so I didn't. It really sucked.

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On 2/8/2018 at 8:33 PM, rnorth512 said:

Title says it all. Had a hard time showing up on time or at all due to new meds. Never spent more than my accrued time, so I wasn't out very frequently.

Fired the next day after giving him a doctors note for my absence and telling him I had a "medical disability". Said I would try my best. He agreed.

Any thoughts are appreciated because I just read the disabilities act and I'm ready to lawyer up.

Did your boss give you any specific reason as to why he was firing you?

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