Should an Overweight Employee Get Reasonable Accommodation?

A Kantola Learning Minute

An HR manager has an overweight employee who is asking for reasonable accommodation. Does the employee need a doctor's note? Find out in this week's Learning Minute with workplace trainer Linda Garrett, JD.

Hi, I'm Linda Garrett. We had a pretty straight forward question. Here's how it goes: I've got an employee who is overweight, very overweight. He's asking for certain accommodations. What do I do, make him get a doctor's note?

Well, the answer is really simple. What does your policy say about reasonable accommodation under the American's With Disabilities Act? If your policy states that a doctor's note is needed to verify that a certain accommodation is necessary for an employee to be able to accomplish a certain task, then, by all means, it would be appropriate to ask for a note from the doctor.

What's really important is that you're fair, and you apply the same rules to everyone. The important thing in a case like this is do not focus on the disability. Rather, focus on the essential functions of the job, and whether they can be done with reasonable accommodation so you can move forward.

Thanks for joining us.

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