Epilepsy Foundation

hi I've just this last month been diagnosed with partial complex seizure disorder. I have couple questions. The first one is about my place of work, my last seizure was real bad and before i started work. So I missed 3 days and I went to the department store and asked to take a leave of absence so I could relax and have the thousand and one tests the doctors told me i needed done. I was denied because i've only been with the company for 11 months not a year. My doctor also suggested that i get off the night shift of 10-7, so when i asked to be moved for health reasons they then responded with if i had restrictions or another seizure the store would no longer need my services. My question is are they allowed to do that? Fire me because of a health condition? My next question is I'm having a lot of i think there called auroras. They seem to be progressing from 1 or 2 every couple days to 3 or 4 a night what could this mean, is it possible that another big seizure is coming? The doctor has me on topiramate but it just makes me horribly ill. I've also have been sleeping more like 24 hours straight! I had one incident the other night but i dont know if it was a seizure or what. Here's what happenedthe other night i was sleeping and when i woke up my dream i was having (about being late for work) i started screaming at him that we where late and why didnt he wake me up and he told me that it was friday i was off andit was only 430pm and he said that i kept talking but he couldnt make out what i was saying and took me back to bed the only part i remember though about the incident is waking up from the dream. So if any one could answer my questions that would be wonderful. thanks lee

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yeah i prolly shouldnt say this but i actually work for walmart and i have noticed and been told im not performing like i use to
It has been a while but Life has been crazy. I found out Walmart was trying to say I abandoned my job so they didnt have to pay me unemployment
Depends. If you have not yet met your probation period, then yep they can. I know a kid who was fired because he couldn't come to work during his probationary period...due to having infectious mononucleosis. And this was a food producing plant!

If you are in a work at will state, they can fire you for having seizures - just so long as they don't document that is the cause anywhere.
There not supposed to be able to fire you because of the American with Disabilities Act. but I can assure you, if you have seizures they will find a way around it. It happened to my daughter I can't count the times. Finally the only way to survive was to go on total disability as the seizures prevented here from working. Until that time she never missed a day. One seizure was all it took and they found a way.

It stinks. Here's wishing you much needed luck in this area.

Dee
Wal-mart is hell for epileptics. You are going to have a ton of ambulance bills if you will be having seizures at work considering their policy requires an ambulance to be called any time someone has a seizure, regardless of whether or not its necessary (also one thing you might want to keep in mind, is that alot of people who are only mildly photosensitive are bothered by wal-marts lights - and thats even more of a problem if the store is naturally lit). Unfortunatley without you being able to take time off, not sure there is a way you could realistically test if that's part of your problem. Try wearing a hat with sun glasses or an eye patch at work, and see if that reduces your seizure frequency. When my seizures were active, I eventually figured out that I couldn't spend 30 seconds in wal-mart without having horrible seizure activity that day and the next, then when they were under better control, I could go in so long as I wore an eyepatch. Now I'm in remission I can go in without any accommodations.
I had to ask for permission to post this; and my son allowed this:

Wal*Mart, where my son was employed at under his Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor,
(Special Needs Specialist); which everything was arranged accordingly due to my son's
Neurological and other Medical Conditions he has due to his history and everything else
(and yes, he has Epilepsy too). Wal*Mart agreed to comply with the V.R. Counselor; however,
once she was out of sight, they started putting him everywhere but what he was supposed
to originally do. While he phoned his V.R. Counselor, she was furious and went in with my
son as the appointment was scheduled with the Store Manager - but once they arrived, so
she informed me, that their excuse was: "He had an urgent meeting, and assigned another
individual to take his place." However, my son had seen the Store Manager at the store
and pointed him out to her, which she went right up to his face and blew up all over him
about "hiding" from her. After he threatened to call the Cops to have her removed (? - SHE
is the State, you cannot remove the State off the premises when they are in violation!) my
son told me that she even pulled out her cell phone number and offered to dial the number
which then the Store Manager then backed off and remarked not to do that.

His remark was that he would comply and have him (my son) scheduled accordingly, then
summoning one of the Bosses there, blabbering instructions - and then indicated that they
would phone him (my son) with the new schedule; nearly a month went by and no phone calls
even though he had called his work, while his V.R. Counselor was notified of this, she also
had been phoning them and finally received the message that the position that they had was
already filled quite some time ago, they are trying to find him a position, he was still an
employee. She informed my son she had pressured them to pay up on the wages for loss time
(to get them moving). Then my son was finally called back, but only as a "part time"; for they
would rather not "pay back" lost time - and before you know it, they had him in a very dangerous
and haphazardness position!

Since he knew his V.R. Counselor would be gone for the conference for that period of time,
my son nearly was ran over by several vehicles, while the job he was doing was "off limits";
once his V.R. Counselor returned, she ordered him out while she dealt with them (at Wal*Mart)
and my son had his wisdom teeth removed at the same time. Her fury became outraged, where
she even informed me about it - however, once again, only this time around; she wanted it all
down in writing so she could put it in his chart. They indicated to her that "it was against the
Company's policies" (OH? They just informed that to the State of what they are going to do
and not going to do?) So the fight went on, finally because I had rapport with a friend of mine
who was one of the Top Management of Wal*Mart of a Super Wal*Mart store, informing him
of what all was going on, he inquired of the Store Number of where my son was employed at;
for he could access it and report this to the Headquarters, as well as his Counselor's Name and
number ...

It was a shocker to find out that specific Wal*Mart that my son was working at was the worst
one in this County, if not, in this State was his report - for it had a very bad reputation and history
there, and multiple times they had considered shutting it down but the store there, as small as it
is, was profitable. As he indicated, there were much disputes about whether to close it or to keep
it open; for many Store Managers have taken the reigns at that location, and yet it had continued
to remain of being a "bad store". In turn, working with his V.R. Counselor and the Headquarters,
they laid hold of the GOOD Wal*Mart Stores who would cooperate and comply with the V.R. Counselor
and wanted him.

The bad side of the story? Once this Wal*Mart found out about it all, they fired him; indicating he
went AWHOL (absence without leave) even though he had provided them Dental Report, V.R.
Counselor had filed a report, etc - insomuch, they would not even provide him his last paychecks
owed to him. While his V.R. Counselor now became married and moved away, he was supposed to
be reassigned to a new V.R. Counselor, but that V.R. Counselor never did anything.

I had to revert back to emailing to whom I had rapport with and informing him what went on, not
only did he get mad, but requested our phone number to speak with my son directly; which he did.
He was livid! While he filed the report himself and turned it over to the Headquarters, Wal*Mart
there only gave him 1 paycheck, but shorted him out big-time. I had to scan the image of his
pay-stub, and send it via email to him, which he forwarded it to the Headquarters; they had to wait
120 days to make sure that the paycheck was never cashed for their contact with the store implied
that he cashed the check at the store. The Headquarters wanted proof, which delayed it further;
until the investigation went on, it was found that it never existed. The Headquarters themselves
gave the orders for them to mail the check out and to delete the termination.

We never knew about this part at all until that Manager emailed me after the Headquarters contacted
him to get a hold of us because they were unable to reach my son via phone (our number had changed),
and he did so. From there the Headquarters spoke with my son, which they were quite angry to find
out the paycheck was never issued, nor any letter of elimination of termination that went along with
it. They indicated to him that they would handle this matter themselves; providing him the number,
name and extension number, and if he did not receive the paycheck and letter by this date, to return
the call.

Time flew by, no paycheck or anything from the Store, my son then phoned them - and instead, the
Store wanted HIM to go down to pick up the paycheck as they indicated that "it was against the store
policies to mail paychecks". My son then phoned the Headquarters informing them what they said,
and they remarked, they would be in touch with him shortly. It went nearly two weeks before they
got a hold of him indicating they were having huge difficulties with them because "he did not exist"
on their system. The arguments of the fact he was an employee there (my son still had his badge,
and award, Wal*Mart Vest and Safety Cape), the Headquarters called back, providing an email address
for us to provide pay stubs and since my son indicated he still had all of his Wal*Mart gear, which
I took a photo of it, but the Wal*Mart badge was scanned front and back.

The Headquarters phoned back to thank us, and it was what they needed. Then the return call of
his V.R. papers, any Wal*Mart Papers he had, plus his Dentist so they could call to affirm it. Which
that all had to be scanned as well, emailed to them - goodness gracious; exactly what all did they
need? A life story?

While they returned the call after this compiled emails I had sent to them, they acknowledged they
had received the confirmation fax from the Dentist Office, and the V.R. Office, and the file was
set in the Headquarters - now it would take up to 4 to 6 weeks to deal with that store down there
which would be unfortunate, because they have a entire new management down there who are
going to be clueless, so they are going to have to mail all of these copies down there to them.

After everything was finally looked into, no one down there could argue about it - the check was
mailed according to the Headquarter's orders - my son was paid for a full 40 hour paycheck for
3 week's worth, plus a $50 gift card was sent to me from the Headquarters for me time in scanning
and emailing all this info they needed.

As for my son ever to obtain any employment at Wal*Mart, you can count on your life he is not
stepping in even if it were the last store in on earth - for this alone nearly took over 9 months
to get this matter straightened up.

In regards to the V.R. Counselor replacement, HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!
It was a tremendous joke; since my son had been reassigned, he was supposed to automatically
go from there - but instead all of this was "Ring Around the Rosy". The Vocational Rehabilitation
ended up implying that his "Statue of Limitations" had expired? HOW? His V.R. Counselor never
showed up, and he had been on the phone constantly with them and was told repetitiously that
he (apparently it was a he) would get back with him. He did have a V.R. Counselor before she
came along but that V.R. Counselor was downright lazy and did not even care; much less wanted
to even be bothered. It is very difficult for a handicap or disabled or those with special needs
to find a good V.R. Counselor down here, with these budget cuts - it has become tremendously
even more difficult for all the good ones have departed from this State or were cut.

:(


Sorry that this is long - but my son wanted me to type this out - the unfairness towards people
who have Epilepsy and Neurological disorders who are looking for work and the compliance
towards the Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors.
On my side of the story:

I had a good V.R. Counselor, which I actually "pushed her over the fence" for that was
how stubborn I was, for I was not going to let some Medical Doctors who had labeled
me as catastrophic and "unfit to gain lawful employment" because of my medical
conditions stand in the way - for they had already predestined everything long
before I graduated from Senior High School! After becoming married, this Counselor
now was an Administrator, while she did all she could - it seemed that everything was
tripping off seizures, she would never put me in a hazardous position that would put
me in jeopardy; unfortunately; it finally came to an end where she had to close the
case. It just was not cutting it and she was siding with the original Medical Doctor's
reports from the beginning. *sigh*

Then in 1999 - I made an effort, since having rapport with another V.R. Counselor
who was one of the Administrators; however, there was a "catch" there - I am not
to make mention of Epilepsy, but while he was an Administrator, his Superior only
gave us a 3 month trial basis because of my historical record. Epilepsy blew it all;
my case file was closed with the instructions of "once you receive the brain surgery
and only then may you return back, your case is closed permanently."

:(

I am not a brain surgical candidate.
OMG what a nightmare you all have had.

We on the other hand...Daughter always told her employers of her Epilepsy. She and I both worked in the mall. She worked as hard as she could. Then the inevitable happened a seizure. Then it was well we don't need her any more it is too dangerous for her to be here because of the glass shelves.

Accused my daughter of stealing. to which I nearly ripped the woman's head off. Her drawer was never short one thin dime and she had learning disabilities to boot on top of E. I would come in and do the drawer after Donna was done and hubby would pick her up. Do all the inventory nothing was ever missing.

Then a new hire. This woman supposedly a Christian for me of dubious distinction was stealing the store blind. Many of the products on the shelves had empty boxes.

The owner would rather fire my daughter with E who never stole a dime and keep this back stabbing (well you know what I mean) who had stolen over $300. How you say do I know, I tallied out her drawer and it was short. Told the boss who made excuses for her. I'm sorry to say it was a racial thing but it was. So I told the boss she could taker her job and shove it for what she did to my daughter.

Oh she tried to hold back our bay. took her to the NLRB and was able to document everything and she had to pay us every dime plus the court costs for wasting their time.

So people with E do sometimes get the shaft. I was able to advocate for my daughter. I really wanted to beat the living stuffins out of this woman.

How people can be so cruel and do it without ever blinking an eye. It is beyond me.

So that is my little tale of working with a bigot big time.

Talk about Karma. The mall closed and so did here business. Sometimes you live long enough to see it come back and bite them in the a##.
your employer cant fire you because of your disorder, there is regulations they have to follow so i would hook up with the people for epilepsy rights and go from there.
I can only give you an answer that actually happened to myself. If your employer is unwilling to work with you as to items that you need to do a good job, and be a productive emplyee you can be sure that because of that feeling toward you they will be willing to talk to their lawyers. More than once I have been called into the HR office and handed what looked like a contract and was told that I had to have my doctor sign the paper before I could step back onto company property. When I read the paper it had the following statement on it "I Dr. _______ guarantee that Mr. _______ wil never have an accident while on the company's property". Just think about it, anyone can have an accident at anytime, but this was their way of ending my employment and it wouldn't appear as though they had fired me, I would be making the choice not to get the paper signed. Even though NO doctor would sign a paper guaranteeing that their client would never have an accident. If there is a way to screw someone who is different they or their lawyers will find it.
If you have to take a Medical Leave of Absence, then your employer (although I believe there is a limited time frame available) cannot do anything about it. Believe me I know. I could not terminate an employee that was on Medical Leave of Absence (For a different reason, E is me). Your Dr. should be able to help you out with that, even by writing a note to your work place of requirements ie: stress and all that. Then at least they have record of it and they cannot get out of it then (they have prior knowledge of your medical situation). They could try to find other reasons to let you go, such as not being there due to transportation and absence from your scheduled work times. It unfortunately doesn't help when the employer or management has not been in a similar situation and no understanding or compation. I am not an employment law professional, just giving you my experiences from the employer stand point. I had an employee that was pregnant leave on FMLOA 3 months before having her baby (due to stress) and then an additional 6 months of bonding time!! My hands where completely tied. Get as much information as you can and like said before, know your rights.

Good luck to you,

Ray
Yes, I know about LOA's but this happened out of the blue. I had not asked for any time off or any special accomadations. They just used it as a way to remove me from the payroll because of my E.

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