Deposition questions you may be asked in your disability discrimination lawsuit

If you have filed, or are contemplating filing an employment lawsuit based on disability discrimination, you can expect to be asked questions similar to the following at your deposition:

Questions designed to determine whether you have a disability

Have you ever been diagnosed with a disability?

  • When were you first diagnosed with a disability?
  • Who first diagnosed you with a disability?
  • What was the diagnosis?
  • What was the prognosis?
  • Were any medical restrictions put in place as a result of the diagnosis?
  • Were any medications prescribed as a result of the diagnosis?
  • Has anyone else diagnosed you with a disability?
  • Has anyone ever told you that you could not or should not engage in any physical activities?

What are your symptoms?

  • How often do they occur?
  • Is there anything that you can do to prevent those symptoms from occurring?
  • Is there anything that you can do to minimize those symptoms from occurring?
  • Do you participate in physical therapy?
  • Do you participate in mental therapy?

Have you ever taken a medical leave of absence from an employer because of your disability? If yes:

  • What was the name of the employer?
  • When?
  • What was your position?
  • Who was your supervisor?
  • What were your job duties and responsibilities?
  • What precipitated your need for a medical leave of absence?
  • Whom did you ask to approve your medical leave of absence?
  • What type of documentation, if any, did you provide?
  • How did your employer respond to your request for a medical leave of absence?
  • When did the medical leave of absence begin?
  • When did the medical leave of absence end?
  • Do you believe that your employer handled your request for the medical leave of absence properly?
  • What could your employer have done differently?

Have you ever asked for a reasonable accommodation from an employer because of your disability? If yes:

  • What was the name of the employer?
  • When?
  • What was your position?
  • Who was your supervisor?
  • What were your job duties and responsibilities?
  • What precipitated your need for a reasonable accommodation?
  • Whom did you ask to approve your request for a reasonable accommodation?
  • What type of documentation, if any, did you provide?
  • How did your employer respond to your request for a reasonable accommodation?
  • What was your requested reasonable accommodation?
  • Do you believe that your employer handled your request for reasonable accommodation properly?
  • What could your employer have done differently?

How does your disability affect you in your daily life?

  • Does it affect your ability to sleep?
  • Does it affect your ability to eat?
  • Does it affect your ability to care for yourself?
  • Does it affect your ability to walk?
  • Do you do your own grocery shopping?
  • Do you do your own clothes shopping?
  • Can you shower without help?
  • Do you engage in any sports?
  • What are your hobbies?
  • Do you engage in any physical activities?
  • Does it hurt to walk? Sit? Stand? Climb a ladder?

Questions designed to determine whether you can perform the essential functions of the job

What was your job title with the defendant [i.e., the employer you are suing for disability discrimination]?

  • Please list all of the job duties and responsibilities that you had with the defendant.
  • What were your main job duties and responsibilities?
  • What percentage of your day was spent performing each of your job duties and responsibilities?
  • Which job duties and responsibilities were you able to perform even with your disability?
  • Which job duties and responsibilities were you unable to perform because of your disability?
  • Were there any accommodations that you believe would have allowed you to perform these job duties and responsibilities?

Questions designed to determine whether you requested a reasonable accommodation

Did you tell anyone at defendant [that is, anyone at the employer you are suing for disability discrimination] that you had a disability?

  • Who?
  • When?
  • Where?
  • Any witnesses?
  • What did you say?
  • What did that person say?
  • Did you tell anyone else at defendant that you had a disability? If yes, who, when, where, etc.

Have you ever heard the term “reasonable accommodation”?

  • What is your understanding of that term?

Did you ever ask anyone at defendant for a reasonable accommodation?

  • Who?
  • When?
  • Where?
  • Any witnesses?
  • What did you say?
  • What did that person say?
  • Any documentation memorializing regarding your request?
  • Did you submit any documentation from a doctor to support your request?
  • Did you get the accommodation that you requested?
  • Did it work?
  • Did you get a different accommodation?
  • Did it work?
  • Did anyone from the defendant explain why you were not getting the accommodation you requested?
  • Did anyone from the defendant explain why you were getting a different accommodation from the one you requested?
  • Did you understand the defendant’s explanation?
  • Were there any other accommodations available to you?
  • Did you suggest them to the defendant?
  • Did the defendant offer you any other accommodations?
  • Did you accept the defendant’s offered accommodation?
  • If yes, did it allow you to perform your job duties and responsibilities?
  • If no, why not?
  • Did you prefer certain accommodations over other accommodations? Why?
  • Did you ask anyone else at defendant for a reasonable accommodation? [If yes, the questions above will be repeated, with regard to this request.]