I take prescribed meds for ADD and sleep.
I am a California attorney and cannot give legal advice in your state. My comments are information only, based on federal law and general legal principles. YOUR STATE MAY HAVE ITS OWN LAWS THAT OFFER SIMILAR OR GREATER PROTECTION. If I mention your state’s laws, it only means I did a quick Internet search and found something that looked relevant. You MUST check with an attorney licensed in your state to learn your rights.
You may have more than a claim for more than unemployment benefits. There are various sources of POTENTIAL protection related to your medical status.
If the condition is due to a disability as defined by law, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, 42 U.S.C. sections 12101 et seq. (ADA) may provide some protection. Please look at my Avvo guide on the ADA: http://www.avvo.com/pages/show?category_id=6&permalink=disability-discrimination-in-employment. There must be at least 15 employees for the ADA to apply. This law protects you from discrimination (adverse treatment) DUE TO disability and also requires the employer to provide reasonable accommodation (change in the manner in which work is done) so you can do the main parts of the job (essential functions). A leave of absence may be a proper reasona le accommodation.
There is limited protection if the illness or injury is caused by a serious medical condition as that is defined by law.You may be protected under the Family and Medical Leave Act, 29 U.S.C. section 2101 et seq. (FMLA) if all of the following is true: (a) your employer has at least 50 employees who work within 75 miles of one another; and (b) you have worked for this employer for at least one year all together, even if not consecutively; (c) you have worked for this employer at least 1,250 hours in the immediately preceding year; and (d) you have a serious medical condition as defined by the FMLA. The FMLA allows employees to take leaves of absence from work without repercussion, up to a maximum of 12 weeks per year. Leave can be in increments as short as fractions of an hour.
Please look at my Avvo guide on the Family and Medical Leave Act, 29 U.S.C. section 2101 et seq. (FMLA) to see if that law applies in your situation: http://www.avvo.com/pages/show?category_id=6&permalink=family-and-medical-leave-fmla-summary-of-key-provisions.
Employment law is complicated and fact specific. You may wish to consult with an experienced plaintiffs employment attorney in your state. To find a plaintiffs employment attorney in your area, please go to the web site of the National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA). NELA is the largest and most influential bar association in the country for attorneys who represent working people. The web site is www.nela.org, and you can search for attorneys by location and practice area.
Also, NELA has affiliates in every state and in many cities. On the NELA web site, you can look at the list of affiliates. Some attorneys will be listed in the affiliate membership list, some in the national organization membership list, and some in both. Being listed in one or both lists should not influence your selection because attorneys can choose whether or not to purchase the listing in the national directory. Each local affiliate has its own rules for listing.
I hope you can resolve your situation and wish you the best.
*** All legal actions have time limits, called statutes of limitation. If you miss the deadline for filing your claim, you will lose the opportunity to pursue your case. Please consult with an experienced employment attorney as soon as possible to better preserve your rights. *** Marilynn Mika Spencer provides information on Avvo as a service to the public, primarily when general information may be of assistance. Avvo is not an appropriate forum for an in-depth response or a detailed analysis. These comments are for information only and should not be considered legal advice. Legal advice must pertain to specific, detailed facts. No attorney-client relationship is created based on this information exchange. *** Marilynn Mika Spencer is licensed to practice law before all state and federal courts in California, and can appear before administrative agencies throughout the country. She is eligible to represent clients in other states on a pro hac vice basis. ***
No, you are not out of luck as long as you can establish the connection between your physical condition/use of prescribed medication and the tardiness AND that you informed your employer of the same. If you were tardy for a medical reason and you informed your employer about the problem, tardiness is not deemed "misconduct" which disqualifies you from receiving benefits.
It is not clear to me where you are in the unemployment benefit process from your question but you should apply and if you are denied at the initial level, then appeal. You should apply for benefits every week while you are waiting for your appeal to be heard. If you can get a letter from your doctor connecting your tardiness to your prescribed and medically necessary medications, you can submit that for consideration. You will also need to establish that you notified your employer of the reason for your tardiness so be prepared to talk about that at both the initial interview, and if necessary, the appeal hearing. Sarah Reindl
Nothing herein should be construed as legal advice or establishing an attorney-client relationship between us. There may be time limits applicable to your claim and you are encouraged to seek legal advice formally. This post is intended to be generally informational in nature only.
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