Your health may change over the course of your career. A degenerative condition or injuries from an accident may leave you unable to perform some of your job duties. However, it may not be legal for your employer to fire you because of your health.
As you experience changes in your health, your employer could sometimes decide to let you go from the company. According to the Indiana Department of Labor, your boss does not always need a concrete reason to terminate your job. Indiana is an “at-will” employment state, and this allows companies to set their own policies regarding employment. However, state and federal laws still offer some protection when you experience health challenges.
What protections exist for employees?
Changes in your health may require you to be out of the office for several weeks or months. The Houston Chronicle says that the Americans With Disabilities Act offers protection if you cannot carry out all of your job duties because of your health. Additionally, it protects you if you need accommodations on your job. An accident may restrict your mobility, for example, or you may need to take more frequent breaks.
Additionally, the Family and Medical Leave Act protects you if your health prevents you from working temporarily. Your company has to grant you medical leave if your condition meets certain requirements. This includes serious changes to your health.
Can your employer terminate your job?
Although Indiana is an “at-will” employment state, employers still have to follow the guidelines set forth by the ADA and the FMLA. If you need some accommodations to perform your job, your employer has an obligation to provide them. An employer who fires you without attempting to fulfill these accommodations may be breaking the law. Additionally, it is usually not legal to fire you while you are on FMLA leave.
Your termination may have been wrongful if your employer violated federal regulations.