1. Free Legal Help, Legal Forms and Lawyers. TheLaw.com has been providing free legal assistance online since 1995. Our most popular destinations for legal help are below. It only takes a minute to join our legal community!

    Dismiss Notice

I reduced my weekly work day due to work injury but my HR can't accomodate.

Discussion in 'Workers Compensation' started by nopinoni, Mar 16, 2018.

  1. nopinoni

    nopinoni Law Topic Starter Member

    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Jurisdiction:
    New York
    Hello everyone,

    I will try my best to explain my situation, it's a little complicated, hope someone can answer my question.

    I'm from New York and am working in giant retail company. I came back to work from work injury and still under a worker compensation and undergoing physical therapy. Due to he nature of my work, I constantly on my feet for long period of time and causing my knees hurt and swollen. My doctor has provided me a note to HR to accommodating me to work 4 days instead of 5 days till recovery. My HR has approved it. Now I am on my third month, but HR told me they cannot continue to accommodating me and have me come back to my regular work. I wonder if this is illegal or against the labor law? My doctor told me that my injury require an ongoing and long-term physical therapy. I have been told by one of my colleague that she works 4 days as well due to her medical issue and my company has accommodating her for over two years. I'm confuse. Please.. I hope someone who is familiar with the NYS employee right and law could help me. I wonder if I should get an employment lawyer?

    Thank you very much!

    Shallowseas
     
  2. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

    Messages:
    6,752
    Likes Received:
    1,506
    Trophy Points:
    113

    Not an employment lawyer, a workers comp lawyer. Big difference.

    First, though, you might talk to someone at the NY WC Board and see if you can get some free help.

    NYS Workers Compensation Board - Home Page
     
  3. nopinoni

    nopinoni Law Topic Starter Member

    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
     
  4. nopinoni

    nopinoni Law Topic Starter Member

    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Thank you for your quick response. I have a Worker Compensation lawyer since they beginning. Will the worker comp lawyer help with my HR issue?

    Thanka.
     
  5. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

    Messages:
    30,604
    Likes Received:
    4,245
    Trophy Points:
    113


    Ask your HR Rep or Manager WHAT an employee is required to do to REQUEST a REASONABLE workplace accommodation under Federal and NY State law.

    Here is one NY state agency that oversees such request:

    https://dhr.ny.gov/sites/default/files/pdf/466-11-and-Appendix.pdf

    Here is another:

    http://dmna.ny.gov/state/files/Reasonable_Accommodation_(Disability).pdf

    HINT: To ensure your request is treated properly, you must understand that there is a certain policy set forth and a protocol to be followed.

    A mere note from a physician ALONE, won't get you anywhere near what you think you require.

    Start by asking how, what forms, etc...

    Someone knows, and someone will help you in your company.
     
  6. nopinoni

    nopinoni Law Topic Starter Member

    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Thank you for the links.

    I got phone call from my Human Resources and she wanted to meet me at her office on this Monday, it’s regarding the accommodation. Can I bring witness (eg. colleague that I mentioned above) to the meeting? What questions should I ask HR when I meet with her? Should I get my worker comp lawyer involved ?

    Do you mean that my doctor note from my Orthopedic’s doctor wasn’t enough to get me anywhere? What other supportive documents do I need or should I get for this request?

    Please help urgently. I appreciate it very much. Thank

    S
     
  7. cbg

    cbg Super Moderator

    Messages:
    7,921
    Likes Received:
    1,140
    Trophy Points:
    113

    Just for clarification - No, it is not illegal or a violation of any labor law for them to put an end to a four day work week. With limited exceptions that do not appear to apply here (although they may apply in future) the doctor's note has no force in law and the employer is not obligated by any legal doctrine to follow the doctor's orders.

    Now, that being said, I can think of at least three possibilities that may or may not apply. You are a long way from needing a lawyer or a witness if this is your first meeting with HR to discuss accommodations. Unless your co-worker does exactly the same job you do, it may be that her position lends itself to a 4 day week and yours does not, not on an ongoing basis. Or it may be that they can sustain one position at only 4 days but not two. In any case, her situation has nothing to do with yours.

    There are lots of different possibilities for you; there is FMLA, there is the ADA, there is light duty. There is no reason to think there is any attempt to try to screw you or take advantage of you just because they are unable to accommodate the doctor's first choice of an accommodation long term. See what HR has to say on Monday. It doesn't all have to be resolved in one sitting and probably won't. C'mon back then and tell us what happened and we'll be in a better position to help you.
     
  8. nopinoni

    nopinoni Law Topic Starter Member

    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Thank you for the clarification. I will go meet her first and see.
    Hi everyone,

    Thank you so much for the info. I have better understanding now. I appreciate it very much.

    One last questions:
    Does anyone know if I'm allow use video/voice recorder during the HR meeting? What if the question that they ask make me uncomfortable? Do I have a right not to answering them?

    Thank you.
     
  9. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

    Messages:
    30,604
    Likes Received:
    4,245
    Trophy Points:
    113


    Only the management of the company employing you can answer that question.

    If you must know, ask one of the HR managers.
     
  10. cbg

    cbg Super Moderator

    Messages:
    7,921
    Likes Received:
    1,140
    Trophy Points:
    113

    You are allowed to use a video/voice recorder if they say you can. If they say you can't, then you can't.

    No one can force you to answer any question you don't want to, but the more information they have, the better they can help accommodate. Why do you assume this is going to be adversarial?
     
  11. nopinoni

    nopinoni Law Topic Starter Member

    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Thank you for the info. I appreciate it.

    I feel nervous because I don’t know much of employee right. My co worker told me that HR never called employee for anything good. I'm so nervous.

    Thank you so much!
     
  12. cbg

    cbg Super Moderator

    Messages:
    7,921
    Likes Received:
    1,140
    Trophy Points:
    113

    I'm sure there are people out there (we have one who posts here) who believe that HR's goal in life is to make everyone miserable. As a former HR manager and someone who has been (and still is) in some form of HR for almost 40 years, I cannot agree with that. There's really no reason to assume this is going to be an adversarial situation. The fact that they are no longer able to accommodate your preferred schedule doesn't mean they aren't going try to find another solution for you.
     
    hrforme likes this.
  13. nopinoni

    nopinoni Law Topic Starter Member

    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Ok got it. It make me feel a little better. I will come back and report after I meet with HR. Thank you
     
  14. nopinoni

    nopinoni Law Topic Starter Member

    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Hi,

    Sorry for late reply. I just want to report back to everyone after I meet my HR. My HR had rescheduled the meeting due to snow storm. I just met up with her couple of days ago. She is allowing me to continue to work 4 days a week after the discussion. Her initial idea was wanted me to work 5 days a week. All the information I received from everyone in this forum better prepared me for this meeting before I went in. I truly appreciate all your help. Thank you.
     
  15. nopinoni

    nopinoni Law Topic Starter Member

    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Hello Everyone,

    I want to thank everyone in advance for all the expert advice to the queries I've been posting to this forum.

    I am once again posting about practically the same issue as before but slightly different this time.

    Today I was told by my Account Executive that I would be receiving a letter from my HR department that they are requiring me to work 5 days a week starting next month. She then handed me the exact letter she said I would be receiving from HR. When I asked her what this was about she stated they could no longer accommodate my 4 day work schedule as requested by medical team because it is "at this time" an "undue hardship". Furthermore my Account Executive then suggested that I take a freelance position which would not guarantee any work and would essentially entail a loss of medical benefits, sick time, vacation time, & a pay cut! My Account Executive knows I go to physical therapy every week and then stated to me "is it because you need your medical benefits that you don't want to take a freelance position?" I felt very threatened by her approach and tone and I do not want to lose my health benefits or any benefits for that matter.

    I feel that I am being 'singled out' by my HR department for the accommodations of the legitimate medical disability I have. Are they in violation of any NYC Labor laws in requiring me to work knowing I have a medical disability or asking me to essential step down from a position which took my years to achieve to an entry level position losing all my benefits?

    Please advice or help, I appreciate it very much.

    Thank you.
     
  16. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

    Messages:
    30,604
    Likes Received:
    4,245
    Trophy Points:
    113


    It never hurts to discuss yoru concerns with the right person or people.

    I wouldn't worry about anything the account executive has to say, and frankly I'd stop talking about my medical issues with anyone but members of the HR management team.

    It very often happens that companies can't accommodate schedules, and tough choices have to be made.

    Even if the decision is to terminate you, and i'm only GUESSING, it would take you five to seven years before you'd have a result in a court of law.

    My first case our of law school many years ago was to represent my dad in an age discrimination case.

    We won, he received a nice judgment, severance package, retirement pay, and medical benefits.

    It took us seven years in federal court to achieve that result.

    Why does that matter?

    If you don't want to lose the job, do whatever you must to keep it until you can get another job, because seven years is a very long time to miss meals and a paycheck.

    My dad did well, he didn't need the job, he wanted to prove a point.

    Even if he had lost, he'd have been okay.

    I'm not an HR person, just an old country lawyer.

    If I were you, or had my dad's situation been different, I'd have told him to try to reach an amicable settlement for the moment.

    You can always pull the pin when you;re ready, that way you avoid nasty surprises.
     
    nopinoni likes this.
  17. nopinoni

    nopinoni Law Topic Starter Member

    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Thank you for sharing your experience and for your quick reply. It was very informative. Also judging from your handle i assume you are or were in the the Army in which case i also thank you for your service.

    Are there any other experts or professional on the forum with knowledge specific to NYC employment, labor laws or standards who are willing to share any information they have to help me before i meet with my HR department next week?

    Thank you again in advance.
     
  18. txls

    txls Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,965
    Likes Received:
    272
    Trophy Points:
    83

    You would do well to read up on the Americans with Disabilities Act. If I were your employer I would question whether or not you need an entire day for physical therapy. If I were you I would not bring up the colleague who works a 4 day week. Her circumstances may be different.
     
  19. cbg

    cbg Super Moderator

    Messages:
    7,921
    Likes Received:
    1,140
    Trophy Points:
    113

    I told you when this first started that it was not a violation of the law for them to refuse you, your preferred schedule. The laws have not changed since your first post. Even if we assume that the ADA applies, it does not entitle you to the accommodation you want or even the one the doctor recommends; only one that works.Your co-worker's situation is not necessarily the same as yours and what is happening with her does not obligate them to do the same with you.

    You've been certain ever since this began that because they are unable or unwilling to provide you with exactly that you want, that this means they are going to try to screw you over and that you need to gain some kind of advantage. If that attitude comes through in the meeting the way it comes through here, that's going to hurt you, not help you. If you really want advice as to how to handle the meeting, I would tell you to go in with an open mind and LISTEN to what they have to say. Then you'll have some actual facts to come back to us with and we will be able to tell you how facts, and not your imaginings, relate to your rights under the law. Right now nothing you have posted has suggested that they are in violation of either state or Federal laws. There is nothing in any state or Federal law that guarantees you a full day off every week to go to physical therapy.
     
  20. cbg

    cbg Super Moderator

    Messages:
    7,921
    Likes Received:
    1,140
    Trophy Points:
    113

    I want to add something to my post above.

    I understand that you're scared. I really do. I know that you feel helpless and that you're trying to protect yourself.

    But you're going about it in the wrong way. By assuming that everyone is out to get you, you may be shutting yourself off from some possibilities you may not have thought of.

    Your HR person sounds as if she knows what she's doing. That means this isn't her first rodeo and she probably has some ideas of how to help you, even if they can't give you exactly what you want. Why don't you give her a chance? We'll still be here after your meeting; you can tell us what she said and suggested and we can tell you if it's in any way a violation of your rights. But truly, you do not have the right under any law to a four day week. There is no NY law and no Federal law that is going to guarantee you that. You are going to have to open your mind to some alternate possibilities. You can best do that by working WITH your HR and not assuming that everyone else is working against you.
     

Share This Page