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Workplace trying to deny reduced schedule


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I have been working 7-hour days for the past 6 months due to POTS. I requested an ADA accommodation and it was granted. There has been no problem until HR resigned, new management came in and they found that there is nothing on my record stating anything about an ADA accommodation. They are also saying that they don't have to do this accommodation as long as they find a different way to accommodate me. I asked for the accommodation so I can go to doctor's appintments and have time to consult with doctors during business hours. In addition to that, the reality is that I am really pusing it to be able to work 7 hours and I can't imagine trying to work more than 7 hours per day, mostly due to chronic fatigue related to POTS and to long COVID. My employer is trying to say that working 40 hours per week is an integral part of my work assignment and that doing anything different from that would pose an undue hardship on the company. Reality is that most of the year there is not enough work for everyone there and we make up things to do just to keep busy. Anyone can step in and do anybody else's work and no position is dependant on the next like a moving production line would be structured. This claim does not hold water, but it would mean a legal fight that I don't want to be forced into. 

I know there are different roads I can take, but I don't know what to do to protect best protect my job, including my ability to do my job. 

1. I could get a doctor's note restricting me to 7 hours per day, 5 days per week. I know getting the note would not be a problem, but I don't know how long I can use that without getting fired, given their argument noted above.

2. I could continue to pursue the ADA line as far as I can take it and see what alternative they come up with. I don't know if I should add physical limitation of hours to the need for doctors appointments or how best to approach this.

3. I don't know where FMLA fits in to this picture. I have never used it before.  

I know a lot of people on this forum have had experience with this and I would appreciate any insights anyone can provide as I try to figure out how to approach this question.

Thank you.


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@MeAgain... Your employer is required by law to accommodate any adjustments to your work environment that are due to a disability ( in the US ). If you have to use time off for medical reasons they HAVE to use FMLA, that is a law ( if you used up all of your sick and vacation days ). 

I also had to stop working ( twelve hour shifts as RN ) due to POTS. My employer was VERY generous and they worked with me and my doctor. First they adjusted my hours ( from 3 12 hour shifts to 3  8 hour shifts ). Then they gave me a job I could sit on a computer all day. When I was no longer able to walk the hall ways they allowed me to use a wheel chair. To adjust the less hours I worked ( plus when I was not able to come into work due to my illness ) they used FMLA. 

My HR department explained to me that they HAVE to do anything possible to allow me to keep employed because they are not allowed to fire you based on a disability. However - they are right that if you are no longer able to perform the duties you were hired for ( your job description ) they CAN fire you. In my case only once all attempts to keep me employed and all my FMLA was used up did I have to stop working. 

The reality is that if we are too sick to do what we were hired for we may no longer be able to remain in that position. I was lucky since I had elected Short-term disability insurance and my employer had taken out long term disability insurance, so I was receiving pay once it was established that I had to stop working. If you do not have that but have to stop working there are programs for you to apply for. 

If your symptoms keep you from working in your current line of work you may want to look for another position that is more suited to your requirements? for me the reason I had to stop was that I was so fluctuating in my abilities and had to call off so often that this created a real problem for the employer ( as you know nurses are vital and if they do not show up for work it creates a problem for the hospital ). 

Please remember to be kind to yourself! I know for a fact that staying employed and ignoring my symptoms made my POTS a lot worse. No job is worth risking your health IMO! 

This may be a good resource for you  Articles - Dysautonomia Information Network (DINET)


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Thank you for sharing, Pistol.

I can easily do all of the essential functions of my job while I am there. That is why I am trying so hard to keep it. I just can't do 8-hour days, which the employer is claiming to be an essential part of my job. I also know my health will deteriorate faster if I am not working, both from the lack of an active schedule and from the lack of medical care/food/ housing.

I appreciate all your help.


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You said you requested an ADA accommodation and that it was granted (6 months ago) did they give you a copy of the ok for the accommodation in an email, hard copy… can you talk to the old HR person and get them to give you a statement backing up the request. Keep a log of everything going on. Good luck 

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