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Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA)

In This Guide

Understanding ADA

What is the Americans with Disabilities Act?

The ADA prohibits employment discrimination against "qualified individuals with disabilities". A qualified individual with a disability is one who meets the skill, experience, education, and other job-related requirements of a position held or desired, and who, with or without reasonable accommodation, can perform the essential functions of a job.

How do you qualify for ADA?

In order to be eligible to request a reasonable accommodation under the ADA,

  • The individual must be an employee of Baylor University;
  • The accommodation must be needed in order to perform essential function(s) of his/her job;
  • The reasonable accommodation requested must not place an undue hardship on Baylor University; and
  • The reasonable accommodation must not cause a direct threat to the individual or others.
Why should I self-identify as having a disability?

For more information about essential job functions, undue hardship, and direct threat, see the "Useful Terms to Know" section.

Useful Terms to Know

  • Reasonable Accommodation: an act that does not cause undue hardship on the operation of business (Baylor University)
  • Undue Hardship: any accommodation that is “excessively costly, extensive, substantial, or disruptive, or that would fundamentally alter the nature or operation of the business”
    • Baylor considers factors such as the nature and cost of the accommodation, and the impact on the department that provides the accommodation
  • Direct Threat: a health or safety risk to the employee or others that could cause substantial harm
  • Disability: a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activity, record of such impairment, bring regarded as having such impairment
  • Major life activity: including, but not limited to: caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, seeing, hearing, eating, sleeping, walking, standing, lifting, bending, speaking, breathing, learning, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating, and working
    • A major life activity may also include operation of a major bodily function, including but not limited to: functions of the immune system, normal cell growth, digestive, bladder, neurological, brain, respiratory, circulatory, endocrine, and reproductive functions

Steps to Apply for ADA

  1. Read the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) policy.
  2. Complete the Accommodation Request Form and the Medical Information Form and return to Human Resources.
  3. HR will schedule a meeting with you to discuss the situation. This meeting helps HR determine if additional documentation from a healthcare provider is needed, and to explain the university and employee’s responsibilities throughout the process.
  4. HR will decide if you are eligible for ADA accommodations.
  5. HR will review the essential functions of the job and the functional limitations of the disability, and the reasonableness of an accommodation. If the suggested accommodation creates undue hardship or direct threat, an alternative accommodation will be considered.

    After discussions with the employee and other necessary parties, HR will coordinate to have the accommodation implemented.
  6. Baylor University will determine if the reasonable accommodation will be granted or denied. The decision is communicated to you both written and verbally.
  7. If the Accommodation is Approved:
    The employee is responsible for contacting HR if the accommodation is not implemented in an effective and timely manner. HR will then take necessary steps to ensure full implementation.
  8. If the Accommodation is Denied:
    Human Resources will send the employee an Accommodation Written Response Form indicating why the request was denied. Additionally, Human Resources will schedule a meeting with the employee to discuss the accommodation request and potential alternative accommodations.

    This meeting could involve other staff members, such as managers, General Counsel, Risk Management, and others as needed.

Information about the Process

  • At any point the University may seek advice from third party experts. All information will be kept confidential.
  • Baylor University reserves the right to recertify the qualified disability with the employee’s healthcare provider and follow up with the employee and the department regarding the accommodation. If recertification or follow up is deemed necessary, the employee will receive a written notice.
  • If the employee’s request for accommodation was denied, they should follow the University Grievance Process.

Resources-Americans With Disabilities Act