Court Finds Allowing Postpartum Employee to Leave Work to Avoid Stress Not a Reasonable Accommodation

April 20, 2023 | From HRCalifornia Extra

by Lisa V. Ryan, J.D.; Partner, COOK|BROWN LLP

In a pro-employer decision that provides guidance in responding to employees’ request for accommodations, a California court aptly noted that such requests need not excuse an employee from performing the essential functions of their position (Lopez v. La Casa de Las Madres, 89 Cal.App.5th 365 (2023)).

In this case, a former employee filed a complaint against her previous employer alleging nine causes of action related to what she deemed was unlawful pregnancy discrimination after the shelter refused to provide two accommodations suggested by her doctor, one of which was a “flexible schedule that allowed her to leave work to avoid stress or anxiety.” 

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