A reasonable accommodation is any modification or adjustment in a job, employment practice or work environment that will allow a disabled employee to enjoy equal employment opportunity, to be considered for a job or that is effective in allowing the employee to perform the essential functions of his or her job.
There is no “one size fits all” answer as to what is a reasonable accommodation in any given circumstance. Each case should be evaluated on its own merits, as the law does not want an employer to point to a definition and claim it has done everything it has to do. An employer with 23 employees might have to make far less of an accommodation versus an employer with 1,000 employees.
What is important is that employers engage in a good faith “interactive” process with the employee to determine effective reasonable accommodations; indeed, the law mandates this process.
Essentially, the employer and the affected individual must enter into a dialogue with the objective of finding an accommodation that will allow the disabled employee to perform the essential functions of a job in the workplace.Both parties engage in a form of bargaining to come up with the best way to accommodate the employee’s disability. This is an on-going duty.
Both parties must engage in this process, and it is important that the employer listen and not appear/be callous and/or uncompromising. When both parties engage in good faith, there usually is a solution that will be agreeable to everyone.