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Joseph, Lawyer
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 5299
Experience:  Extensive experience representing employees and management
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I am the HR administrator in a small family owned business.

Resolved Question:

I am the HR administrator in a small family owned business. We have several stores that deliver pizza and employ drivers and insiders to do the work. We just hired someone that the owner said not to hire. The manager of this store who hired him is the owner's daughter and is a loose cannon at times who does what she wants. Our concern is that we know this new employee has a history of severe back problems. The store insider jobs require alot of lifting often heavy loads,dough trays,boxes,etc. We are trying to not have a potential workers comp situation in our store. Now that he was hired by this manager over the owner's no, what can we do? Can I ask him if there are any limitations physically due to his bad back history? Are we stuck? I am quite upset that this was allowed to happen.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: California Employment Law
Expert:  Joseph replied 5 years ago.
Hello and welcome to JustAnswer.

If the employee is suffering from a disability, then you are required to provide him with a reasonable accomodation, as long as he is able to perform the essential functions of the job with a reasonable accomodation.

You should request to know if he has any physical limitations in order to prevent him from potentially reinjuring his back and to provide him with any reasonable accomodation that you can in order for him to perform the essential functions of the job.

However, that said, you can still discipline or terminate the employee despite his disability as long as you are doing so based on the employee's actions separate from his disablity.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Ok but I would like to know even if we take precautions if he injures himself we could still be on the hook for a big claim. Also, what about him being hired when the manager did not have the owner's authority(permission) to do so?
Expert:  Joseph replied 5 years ago.
Yes, you would be liable for a worker's compensation claim if he is injured even if you take precautions and accommodate his disability.

Unfortunately, he could still be hired without the owner's authority, although that could be a basis for his termination.

However, if he were terminated for that reason, he would be able to collect unemployment benefits since he would be considered to be terminated without cause.
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