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Private Sector and Federal Employee Law Blog

Addressing disability discrimination in the workplace

In the modern era, it is a sad fact that discrimination continues to affect employees from all sorts of backgrounds. If you experience discrimination, your career and your entire life may be affected in many ways. At Alan Lescht and Associates, our firm knows how upsetting discrimination can be and we also understand the financial toll of unfair treatment. In addition to religious discrimination, gender-based discrimination and racial discrimination, employees are also discriminated against because of their disabilities. In Washington, D.C., and in cities across America, it is pivotal for those who suspect unlawful disability discrimination in the workplace to take action.

Whether an employer fails to make reasonable accommodations for an employee with a particular disability or a worker is denied benefits that he or she is entitled to, disability discrimination takes many forms. Moreover, disability discrimination may occur during the application process if an employer refuses to hire a qualified and capable employee solely because of his or her disability. Sometimes, those who are expecting a child are also subjected to discrimination at their place of work.

RIFs in the Trump Era: Reemployment Rights after a RIF

Welcome back to our series on RIFs in the Trump era. If you missed Parts One and Two of the series, click here. Today is our final installment of the series, where we will discuss reemployment rights after a RIF.

What are reemployment rights?

Employees who are separated due to a RIF have reemployment priority rights. Agencies use a reemployment priority list ("RPL") to rehire employees separated as part of a RIF. In filling any vacancies that arise after a RIF, an agency must give priority to certain former employees on the RPL over certain outside job applicants. Agencies are also permitted to consider RPL registrants before considering internal candidates.

RIFs in the Trump Era: Appeals and Grievances of RIF Decisions

Welcome back to our series on RIFs in the Trump era. If you missed Part One of the series explaining what RIFs are, click here to read. Today we will focus on appeals and grievances of RIF decisions. Don't forget to come back on Friday, where we will focus on reemployment rights after a RIF.

Who can appeal a RIF?

An employee has a right to appeal a RIF decision or a furlough that lasts more than 30 days to the MSPB. An employee who voluntarily retires pursuant to a RIF may also appeal their retirement if it is based on misleading or inaccurate information.

RIFs in the Trump Era: What is a RIF?

We're sure you've heard by now that President Trump is proposing massive layoffs to the federal government. But how can he do this, and what rules does he need to follow? Tune in for our three-part series on RIFs. Today we will discuss what a RIF is. On Wednesday, we will focus on appeals and grievances of RIF decisions. And finally, on Friday, we will discuss reemployment rights after a RIF.

What is a RIF and how does it work?

A RIF is a government layoff called a Reduction in Force. The federal government must abide by certain rights and protections when deciding who to layoff. Employees within specific geographic areas are ranked according to four factors: tenure, veteran's status, years of service, and performance ratings. The government is required to start from the bottom during RIFs.

What age discrimination means for older women in the workplace

Discrimination in the workplace is not uncommon and can stem from many factors including differences in race, religious preference, political affiliation, gender and age. In Washington, D.C., older people who desire to continue their employment or go back to work are often faced with judgments from their younger counterparts who may discredit qualifications based on age.

According to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, age discrimination is when someone treats an applicant or employee unfairly based on biases associated with age. By definition, older workers are a class of people who are aged 40 and above. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act provides protection for this class and forbids employers from making unfavorable decisions with reference to age, in job assignments and responsibilities, pay structure, and any of the other following situations:

  •          Training
  •          Promotion
  •          Hiring
  •          Termination
  •          Layoff
  •          Fringe benefits

Ensuring your Sick Leave is Properly Calculated

Are you a federal employee scheduled to take administrative leave? Ensure that the Agency is properly calculating your leave request.

Counting Use of FMLA Time

Employees may only be charged for hours that they were scheduled to work. Regulations state that if an employee requests 12 administrative work weeks of FMLA time, the employee may utilize 12 times what their normal schedule would be. For example, if an employee normally works 40 hours per week, the FMLA entitlement will be 480 hours, however if an employee normally works only 20 hours per week, the FMLA entitlement will be only 240 hours.

Counting Holiday Time

Any holidays authorized under 5 U.S.C. § 6103 or by Executive order, and nonworkdays established by Federal statute, Executive order, or administrative order that occur during the period in which the employee is on leave may not be counted toward the 12-week entitlement to family and medical leave.

Can employers turn down applicants over workers' comp costs?

When someone suffers an injury on the job, or already has a disability, their life may be difficult for many reasons. If you are in this position, you may have financial troubles, physical pain and other problems. However, if you are applying for a job, it is vital for you to know your rights and address any instances of disability discrimination that you encounter in Washington, D.C.

According to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, employers are generally not allowed to turn down job applicants solely because they assume that the job applicant is more likely to sustain an injury on the job, thereby raising workers' compensation costs. However, if an employer can prove that hiring a person will carry a direct threat due to job-related risks, this may be a valid reason to turn down someone's application. That said, employers cannot turn down applicants just because there are possible safety risks and they want to play it safe.

Can an employer discriminate against an employee for being obese?


In the United States, more than two thirds of the adult population is considered to be overweight or obese.

Unfortunately, some workplaces engage in discriminatory conduct against employees based on their personal appearance. This could include weight, height or another aspect of a person's appearance.

Discrimination over age rampant in the workplace

For those who experience age discrimination, daily life can be tough. Whether someone loses their job and suffers financial setbacks, such as being unable to pay their bills or buy food, or someone is unable to secure a position they are qualified for because of their age, all forms of unlawful age discrimination are unacceptable. In Washington, D.C., and across the U.S., those subjected to age discrimination may also have strong emotions, such as frustration, sadness and serious anxiety.

A study which was recently carried out found that age discrimination is still rampant in the workplace. As part of the study, researchers sent in over 40,000 false resumes which were the same, setting aside gender and age. Researchers discovered that there were fewer responses for workers who were older, particularly for those who were female.

2 disabled workers allege discrimination

From discrimination based upon an employee's gender to the rejection of an application solely because of a person's age, there are a number of examples of unlawful discrimination in the workplace. However, some workers may also find themselves facing discrimination because of their disability, which can be very devastating. In Washington, D.C., and across the United States, workers who believe they have been illegally discriminated against because of their disability should not hesitate to stand up for themselves.

Two disabled veterans who have been employed by a bank claim that they have been subjected to discrimination. According to the two employees, they are being forced to work longer hours and relocate to the bank's Washington D.C. headquarters, which would be especially difficult due to their disabilities. Furthermore, another employee, also a veteran with a disability, said that she was denied a promotion and is currently involved in a lawsuit with her employer.

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  • AVVO | Newsweek
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I have been a litigator for close to 20 years and Alan is most certainly one of the best attorneys I have ever come across.
Mr. Lescht is an excellent Trial Lawyer, He is calm, cool, and collected.
I also appreciated Alan's frankness and his ability to identify what is important and what is not when going through a case like this.
I would highly recommend Alan to anyone who needs an exceptional and incredibly talented Employment Attorney.
Mr. Lescht is an extraordinarily responsive attorney, returning my emails and phone calls within minutes. I would absolutely recommend him to anyone who thinks they may need a lawyer. Definitely incredible work.
I was impressed with his knowledge and professionalism, and I will always be grateful for his guidance.

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