Does getting fired for coming to work drunk violate disability laws if one is alcoholic?

Asked about 2 years ago - San Francisco, CA

if I have a case for a suit, is there a time limit by which I would need to file the suit?

Attorney answers (4)

  1. Kristine S Karila

    Contributor Level 16


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . No. You cannot be fired in CA if you voluntarily enter rehab. and they fire you for THAT reason. But, of course, if you go to work drunk or get drunk at work, you can be fired for that. Not only is it bad for the company's business, you could be considered a danger to yourself or others.

  2. Marilynn Mika Spencer

    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Alcoholism is a disability under the ADA and the Fair Employment and Housing Act and it would be illegal to fire an employee BECAUSE the employee is an alcoholic. However, employees are still required to follow reasonable work rules:

    To paraphrase 42 U.S.C.A. ยง 12114: An employer may: prohibit the use of alcohol at the workplace by all employees; require that employees shall not be under the influence of alcohol; hold an employee who is an alcoholic to the same qualification standards for employment or job performance and behavior as other employees. *** All legal actions have time limits, called statutes of limitation. If you miss the... more
  3. Neil Pedersen

    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . My colleagues are spot on. You can be fired for coming to work drunk. You cannot be fired for being an alcoholic or for going to rehab.

    The time limit for filing a claim of disability discrimination is one year from the act you complain of. You must file an administrative complaint with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing by that time.

    Good luck to you.

    This answer should not be construed to create any attorney-client relationship. Such a relationship can be formed... more
  4. Arkady Igor Itkin


    Contributor Level 13


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Hello.

    Terminating an employee for coming intoxicated to work is perfectly legal, and is not the same as being terminate for entering into a rehab program, which would be an illegal discrimination.



Related Topics


Employment law governs employee pay, non-discrimination policies, employment classifications, and hiring and firing at the federal, state, and local levels.

Disability discrimination in the workplace

Disability discrimination in the workplace is the unfavorable treatment of workers with disabilities, including failure to provide reasonable accommodations.

Can't find what you're looking for? Ask a Lawyer

Get free answers from experienced attorneys.


Ask now

34,204 answers this week

3,574 attorneys answering

Ask a Lawyer

Get answers from top-rated lawyers.

  • It's FREE
  • It's easy
  • It's anonymous

34,204 answers this week

3,574 attorneys answering