Posted on 06/15/2011 at 01:24 PM by The Newsroom
The EEOCs final regulations interpreting the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA) became effective on May 24, 2011. As reported in a prior Iowa Employer Law Blog post, the EEOC has also posted Questions and Answers and a Fact Sheet on its website to help employers (and employees) understand the final regulations. The EEOC had issued a notice of proposed rulemaking in September 2009, soliciting comments. After considering more than 600 comments, the EEOCs final rules vary slightly from its proposed regulations. The regulations make clear that the primary purpose of the ADAAA is to make it easier for employees to establish a disability under the ADA. Three-pronged Definition of Disability. The ADAAA and final regulations define disability as:
- a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities (actual disability),
- a record of a physical or mental impairment that substantially limited a major life activity (record of), or
- a circumstance in which an employer takes an action prohibited by the ADA because of an employees actual or perceived impairment that is not both transitory and minor (regarded as). Employers must prove as an affirmative defense that the impairment is both transitory and minor.