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Advancing the Human & Civil Rights of People with Disabilities in Illinois


EFE’s Recent Work

Employee Successfully Requests Service Animal as a Reasonable Accommodation

A Helpline attorney received a call from an individual who had a service animal for PTSD. The individual was in the process of applying for new jobs when she contacted the Employment Rights Helpline. EFE discussed best practices for disclosure and requesting reasonable accommodation. Using EFE’s advice, the applicant successfully secured a position and approval to have her service animal in the workplace.

Helpline Attorney Counsels Employee About How to Complete Medical Certification

Equip for Equality received a call from a woman with a back impairment. She needed surgery to mitigate some of the symptoms of her disability. She exhausted her FMLA leave, sick and vacation time, and then requested a leave extension as a reasonable accommodation under the ADA. Her employer requested medical certification, and the employee was unsure how to respond. EFE’s Helpline attorney counseled the employee about how best to respond to a request for medical documentation. EFE also reviewed the employee’s medical documentation and made suggestions to clarify her limitations and need for an accommodation. The employee submitted this medical information, and her requested reasonable accommodation was approved. As a result, she is able to obtain the medical attention she needs without fear of losing her job.

Employee Reinstated After Call with Employment Rights Helpline

An employee with anxiety had requested six months of leave for treatment, and been approved for three months under the FMLA. At the conclusion of the three months, the employee was fired because she could not immediately return to the workplace. EFE provided the employee with advice about leave and reassignment as a reasonable accommodation, including fact sheets and template letters. The employee asked her employer to reconsider her termination and to be reassigned to a different position when she was able to return from leave. The employee’s termination was rescinded and her request for reassignment was granted.


Our client worked as a nurse for a large healthcare company. She has Multiple Sclerosis and, due to her progressive symptoms, was no longer able to work in this position, even with accommodations. Our client considered leaving the workforce and was in the process of applying for benefits when she talked with EFE. We shared information about the Americans with Disabilities Act and counseled the nurse about her right to reassignment to a vacant position as a reasonable accommodation. We then worked behind the scenes to assist our client, as she identified a vacant position that she was qualified for and then requested to be reassigned to the position as a reasonable accommodation under the ADA. The client was placed in the position and was pleased to be able to continue working.


An employee with major depressive disorder contacted EFE after he was fired from a position with a software company. The employee was not interested in returning to work, but wanted to better understand how the ADA would apply to him and how to address the employer’s argument that he did not sufficiently invoke his accommodations rights under the ADA. EFE provided the employee with individualized advice about the ADA and the reasonable accommodation process. The employee had also initiated settlement discussions with his employer. EFE reviewed the employee’s settlement correspondence and assisted as the employee negotiated a successful settlement. The employee was happy to have closure on this chapter and looks forward to starting his next position with new tools for self-advocacy.

Last updated: April 18, 2019

This website is made possible by funding support from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, both the Administration on Developmental Disabilities and the Center for Mental Health Services of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration; and the U.S. Department of Education, the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services. The contents of this website are solely the responsibility of Equip for Equality and do not necessarily represent the official view of any of these agencies.

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