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Marsha411JD, Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 19682
Experience:  Licensed Attorney with 29 yrs. exp in Employment Law
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We hired someone and as he is filling out his new hire paperwork

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We hired someone and as he is filling out his new hire paperwork he indicates some serious medical conditions. One of them being heart failure. Are we allowed to ask him to get a doctors note giving him the ok to perform work duties?

Thank you for the information and your question. No, you cannot ask any employee for a doctor's note merely because they have preexisting medical issues. An employer may though as all employees if they are capable of doing particular tasks (the essential functions of the job.) If the employee says no, then, if the tasks are essential to performing the job the employer can refuse to hire them based on their inability unless the applicant requests a reasonable accommodation under the ADA and the employer can grant that without causing an undue hardship on the business. So, for example, if it is essential that an employee be able to lift 40 pounds or climb ladders, then the employer can ask them if they can do that.

Again though, the employer cannot ask for a doctor's note unless and until the employee says they need accommodations in their work.

Please let me know if you need any clarification. I would be glad to assist you further if I can.
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