The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals has weighed in on the hot-button issue of whether leave is a reasonable accommodation under the ADA. The EEOC has made this a major issue, arguing that additional leave beyond the FMLA-required twelve weeks may be required as a reasonable accommodation under the ADA.
The 10th Circuit limited that argument in a case where an employee asked for indefinite leave after his FMLA leave expired. The Court said his request for indefinite leave was not a reasonable accommodation; however, a request for leave with a specific return date may be one.
This decision limits the impact of the leave-as-reasonable-accommodation debate somewhat, but still places obligations on employers in a post-FMLA context.