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How to Determine Essential Job Tasks

Author: Linda Segall, Segall Enterprises

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires written job descriptions to identify the position's essential job tasks or functions (also known as duties and responsibilities). This requirement allows employees, job applicants and the employer to agree on the key elements of the job that must be performed, with or without accommodation.

Identifying essential job tasks opens the employment door to individuals with disabilities. It also opens the door for employers to consider all applicants who are best qualified for a job - including those they might not otherwise have considered.