In 2015, lawmakers in the Prairie State approved the Illinois Human Rights Act. This sweeping provision forbids most types of discrimination in most situations. Specifically, it prohibits disability discrimination in all its forms. Some types of disabilities, and types of disability discrimination, are outlined below. Basically, if a person is qualified to perform a job, employers must make reasonable accommodations, so these individuals can overcome their disabilities and become productive team members.
When employers discriminate against disabled workers and government bureaucrats stand by and do nothing, a Chicago disability discrimination lawyer from the Law Office of Mitchell A. Kline takes up the banner. Unlike a government lawyer, a private lawyer represents you. Therefore, our legal team works hard to build a strong, evidence-based case. This case includes a solid medical diagnosis and clear evidence of discrimination. With this foundation in place, we are well-positioned to obtain maximum compensation for you in court.
In this context, a “disability” is any physical, mental, emotional, or other condition that limits the ability to perform daily tasks, like using a telephone, sitting for long periods of time, or dealing one-on-one with irate customers or clients..
Reasonable accommodations in this area include text transcript phones for hearing impaired people, frequent breaks for workers with back issues, and giving employees backup during contentious meetings.
Usually, a worker must have a current medical diagnosis of a recognized disability from a fully-qualified physician.
Incidentally, a “reasonable accommodation” is not a compromise accommodation, especially if a doctor prescribes a certain accommodation. For example, if an employee with back problems needs a custom chair, the worker doesn’t have to accept a slightly nicer Office Depot chair.
Employers must offer reasonable accommodations during all phases of the employer-employee relationship. That includes the hiring process, employment, and post-separation interaction (e.g., a boss cannot give a disabled employee a bad reference because that worker is disabled).
Frequently, disability discrimination is a simple matter of dollars and cents. Non-disabled workers who do not require accommodations are cheaper than disabled workers who need assistance. That is why job-related disability bias is such a big problem in Chicago.
Disability discrimination and unlawful retaliation are the two theories that a Chicago disability discrimination lawyer uses most frequently to obtain compensation in court.
Proving disability discrimination usually starts with showing that the disabled person suffered an adverse action, like a refusal to hire or a refusal to promote. Then, a Chicago disability discrimination lawyer generally shows that the position or promotion went to a similarly qualified, yet not disabled, individual. Such a case is usually strong enough to withstand the most common employer defense in these claims.
Many employers claim the discrimination was incidental because they had a discriminatory neutral reason for the decision. Usually, this “reason” is just a pretext for disability discrimination on the job.
Compensation in a job bias claim usually includes back pay and immediate reinstatement or a reasonable amount of front pay. These court orders usually also include consent decrees that help guarantee reasonable accommodations, not only for the plaintiff, but for other disabled employees as well.
Job bias victims have legal options in Illinois. For a free consultation with an experienced Chicago disability discrimination attorney, contact the Law Office of Mitchell A. Kline. We do not charge upfront legal fees in these matters.