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Do federal laws protect people with ADHD?

Dr. Michael Roizen, MD
Internal Medicine
Federal laws prevent discrimination against people with disabilities, including some people with ADHD, in school or at work. If your ADHD substantially limits you in a major life activity, like self-care activities, seeing, hearing, working, and learning, then you are protected under the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAAA).
Donna Hill Howes, RN
Family Medicine
Several federal laws help ensure that people disabled by attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are protected at school and in the workplace. Specific legislation to protect those with ADHD includes:

- the Rehabilitation Act of 1973
- the Americans with Disabilities Act
- the Individuals with Disabilities Act

However, all people with ADHD are not protected by these laws. Discuss your personal situation with a legal advocate to find out whether you qualify for protection. If you do qualify, you must tell your employer about your condition to qualify for protection from discrimination. In addition to protection from discrimination, you may qualify for specific accommodations at work to improve your productivity.

Children also benefit from these laws. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and the Individuals with Disabilities Act are two laws that help children with ADHD access appropriate public education and special education services, as long as they qualify for the services.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.