The New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (LAD) prohibits employment practices that discriminate on the basis of disability, atypical hereditary cellular or blood trait, or genetic test results, unless the nature and extent of the disability reasonably preclude the performance of the job in question (NJ Rev. Stat. Sec. 10:5-1 et seq.). The LAD covers all private and public employers, regardless of size.
Actual or perceived disabilities. The LAD prohibits an employer from making a decision regarding hiring, promotion, job duties, compensation, or any other condition of employment on the basis of an individual's actual or perceived disability, including past or future disabilities (NJ Admin. Code Sec. 13:13-1.3). 'Disability' Defined
The term "disability" includes physical, mental, psychological, and developmental conditions, whether caused by injury, birth defect, or illness, that:
- Prevent the normal exercise of any bodily or mental function; or
- Can be demonstrated by accepted diagnostic techniques.
Note: The LAD defines "disability" very broadly to include, for example, malformation, disfigurement, any degree of paralysis, amputation, and lack of physical coordination. HIV and AIDS are expressly included as disabilities under the law.
Effective January 15, 2010, a disability under the LAD includes autism spectrum disorders.
Perceived disability. A person with a disability under the LAD includes an individual who is perceived as or believed to be a person with a disability, regardless of whether he or she actually has a disability.
Federal law compared. Although the definition of "disability" under the LAD is broader than the definition under the federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the laws have ...