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Disability Nondiscrimination Law Advisor

Reasonable Accommodation

In the employment context, a reasonable accommodation is a change or adjustment to a job or work environment that allows a person with a disability to participate in the job application process, to perform essential job functions, or to enjoy equal opportunity to benefits and privileges of employment. A reasonable accommodation may include but is not limited to:

  • making a workplace readily accessible to and usable by people with disabilities;
  • job restructuring;
  • providing and modifying equipment and devices;
  • providing readers and interpreters;
  • part-time or modified work schedules; and
  • reassignment to a vacant position.

Federal employment laws use a similar definition of "reasonable accommodation." While the precise wording of each definition may differ from regulation to regulation, the essential meaning of the term remains the same. Some regulatory definitions of "reasonable accommodation" include information about how the term applies in the contexts of provision of employment-related training, benefits, or services. The following list explains where the definition of "reasonable accommodation" may be found in the regulations implementing each of the listed statutes.

  • Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act - 29 CFR 1630.2(o)
  • Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (Title II adopts the employment standards of Title I of the ADA and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. See 28 CFR 35.140.) State and local government employers that are not subject to ADA Title I must follow regulations implementing Title II of the ADA and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act that have been issued by the appropriate Federal agency.
  • Section 188 of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 29 CFR 37.4
  • Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended 29 CFR 32.3 of the Department of Labor's (DOL) regulations. DOL's Section 504 regulations are for recipients of DOL financial assistance. If your business or organization receives financial assistance from another Federal agency, be sure to consult that agency's 504 regulations.
  • Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended - 41 CFR 60-741.2(n)
  • Vietnam Era Veterans' Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974 - 41 CFR 60-300.2(t)