Are individuals who have attention deficit disorder (ADD) or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) entitled to workplace accommodations? The short answer is yes.
ADD and ADHD are manifestations of an executive dysfunction disorder. ADD and ADHD can affect a person’s ability to: focus; organize; and complete tasks. An employee with ADD or ADHD has the right to an accommodation, if the request is reasonable and does not pose an undue burden on the employer,
What kinds of accommodations might be considered reasonable for someone with ADD or ADHD? They may include:
- Flexible scheduling that allows an employee to take a break when their mental stamina is low and they are having a harder-than-normal time focusing
- Moving a workspace to an area that has less foot traffic and noise, to can reduce interruptions that may derail the person’s work
- Permission to use electronic devices like phone reminders or email to help stay on track with the job
- Written instructions and checklists regarding job duties, special projects and other essential tasks so they can more easily keep track of what needs to be done
- Assignments that reduce the need for multitasking so the employee can focus on job tasks one at a time, rather than try to divide their attention
- Permission to use noise-canceling headphones and other devices designed to help the employee shut out their environment and focus
Whether you are an employee with ADD/ADHD or an employer who is contemplating a request for workplace accommodations, it is smart to understand your legal rights and obligations. If you are having trouble dealing with accommodation request, seek legal guidance.