The ADA prohibits discrimination in a broad range of employment activities, including the application and interview process, hiring, promotion and termination, job training, compensation and virtually any other term or condition of employment.
You may be held legally responsible for employment discrimination, and could have to pay for both compensatory and punitive damages, if you or your HR professionals:
Under the ADA, you and your HR professionals may not:
In addition, you may not deny employment to a qualified applicant simply to avoid increased benefit costs associated with insuring a person with a disability. However, your company can continue to offer bona fide employee benefit plans that contain exclusions and limitations based on risk classifications as long as they are consistent with state law and are not used as a subterfuge for evading the intent of
Be aware that employees with disabilities are entitled to participate as fully in workplace activities, including training, as other employees. You may need to provide reasonable accommodation to assist disabled employees to participate on a par with their co-employees.
Under the ADA, you must include qualified individuals with disabilities in your efforts to fill jobs, whether from within or outside the company. Reasonable accommodations may be required during the application process for an applicant with disabilities. Here is how the ADA specifically affects your hiring process:
Before you make an offer in the hiring process, you can ask disability-related questions only if you are asking for voluntary self identification of disability for affirmative action purposes or if you are a federal contractor taking affirmative action under the Rehabilitation Act. In these cases, you must inform the applicant that it isn’t necessary to answer, and that not answering will have no effect on the employment decision. You must also advise the person that the information will be used only in accordance with the law. Finally, the information must be kept separately from the employment application.