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Apr 15, 2018 07:51PM
My understanding is that once your FMLA protection is over, as stated above, ADA only protects you insofar as you can actually do the job you were hired for with “reasonable” accomodation — not extraordinary accomodation. This would likely mean your employer would not have to keep you in a secretarial position they do not want you for if they really need someone to work in what you call the infectious risk area but cannot do due to getting chemo.
As for nursing school, at least in the short run until you are cured (hoping!) given you already have $70 k in debt for one career you want to change from, it would make little sense to incur more debt for another career you cannot physically handle the training for even if it is your new dream job.
But you should qualify for short term disability through your state program (and long term social security disability, and Medicare over time if you are not doing well and are totally and permanently disabled) . This would obviously be a major cut in income from being a lab worker in even the most generous states like CA, but if you and any spouse you may have have no or little other household income, you could get the equivalent of basic general relief welfare funding to be able to eat, get Medicaid, get low income housing, food stamps etc. until back on your feet. The student loans would simply not be paid, but maybe you could still preserve credit by getting a deferment, or do partial payments, given such extraordinary hardship, or maybe fund a personal or credit card loan to make minimum payments. Do you have any relatives or friends or church group who could temporarily help you get through this in case there is no go on deferring student loans, so your credit would not be ruined and you would not have to live bare bones?
I am so sorry you have to face all this financial worry, as the BC of course is bad enough. But from the employer perspective, the argument is that to stay in business over time they have certain essential functions that need doing and if there were no time limits on FMLA and ability to do the job condition limits on ADA, and you mutiplied unlimited government mandated extensions to unlimited US firms at employer expense, or had a bill for unlimited more generous free funding of citizens for all unemployability circumstances, the federal and state governments would have to get much bigger, taxes would be way higher, firms would hire less people if they came with more potential future expense baggage because they could not fire them (a problem many European firms have), many would be bankrupt very quickly or never start up in the first place, , and ironically government would then have little left to charge to spend on BC research benefitting future women and other health programs, like NIH, much less for controversial big expense and more politically divisive programs like defense, Medicare, social security, Medicaid and Obamacare subsidies for many on this forum, etc. It is economically very complicated in the big picture, but super scary for a young woman like you facing BC and debts.
Most young Americans do not think much about saving or planning for a rainy day with disability insurance, and then are understandably shocked when they have expensive physical setbacks that threaten their jobs. My parents came to U.S. from war-torn and tyrannical Europe, and pounded into me to save, save, save , avoid debt, and live modestly within one’s means, with a big focus on the future rainy day which was sure to come , but they were from a different generation and outlook and had almost died ( and frankly overdid it — my mom had three different private disability insurances she never used before she died).
I am older now but have saved for stormy days as best possible, , just in case, but was in a circumstance when I was younger before I got married where had I not had good health and ability to work, and work overtime, I would have had to move back in with my mother and have her take care of me with what she had saved, in her doublewide mobile home
After a decade of autoimmune problems, Dx 10/2017 at age 63, IDC, Left, 9mm, Oncotype 13, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/5 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-, 11/22/2017 Lumpectomy, Arimidex. Declined radiation.