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Apr 3, 2006

I don't understand how HIPPA helps me obtain insurance coverage when COBRA runs out. What if I cannot pay for cobra--then what???? Also MY REAL QUESTION::::: I left my current employer and was working 12 hour dayshifts in a hospital. I came back less than one month later and got my old job back but not the same hours. I am now working night shift 7p to 7A. Th night shift is honestly killng me. Can I force my employer to put me back of day shift work under FMLAsince under the device of my doctorit would ne medicallly necessarya

Response from Ms. Franzoi

If you can't afford COBRA, you wouldn't be eligible for a HIPAA policy because HIPAA requires you to exhaust your COBRA coverage first.

Response from Ms. Breuer

FMLA is not a tool you can use to "force" your employer to do anything. FMLA simply provides for up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave if you need to be out to take care of yourself or a family member.

What I think you're thinking of is the Americans with Disabilities Act. Obtain a note from your doc saying that it's medically necessary for you to be on the day shift (which your doc should provide only if it's true)and request a reasonable accommodation of your condition from your employer by giving the note to an officer of the company or an occupational health nurse or a human resources person. Do not disclose your condition; simply explain that you have a disability. There is no law or tool that can "force" your employer to change your shift. Is there someone you can talk with in a reasonable way without making demands? You might have more success that way.

Response from Ms. Breuer

Does your physician agree that the different shift is making a difference in your health? YOu can claim that until the sun comes up, but employers tend to believe experts on matters like this. Please use your physician as your ally. You can't fight this one by yourself.

Response from Ms. Breuer

Your physician's belief that having a particulara shift is medically necessary is not the same as your employer believing that. As we've said, you need a legal voice on your side. Talk with a legal advisor at your local AIDS service center, or at a legal clinic. Your job depends on it.

Response from Ms. Breuer

There is no new information to add to the thread of answers we've already sent. You need a legal advisor, and we're not lawyers. We wish you the best!

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