There are various ways in which you might be alerted to the fact that a client might have a disability, need or want an accommodation. These include:
The client requests assistance
Affirmative Response to Inquiry – the portion of the interview that is mandated in certain situations. See ADA and Assisting Clients
Response to an adverse action notice. See Accommodation Request as a Result of A Closing Reduction or Denial Notice
Your observations of client or case circumstances
Accommodation icon indicates that the Department has previously worked with the client to craft an appropriate accommodation, or
In the Narrative tab, there may be a blue CAC circle to indicate that a CAC has addressed an accommodation request. A blue CAC circle with a “+” sign means the client has an authorized representative. Authorized representatives for all clients may be found in the Actuate report entitled Authorized Rep/Payee Report. See ADA and Assisting Clients for the location of this report
All DTA staff (including Central Office staff with client contact and Hearings Officers) must always be alert to situations where it appears an applicant or client (hereafter called client) is having difficulty with a Department service, activity, rule or requirement because of a disability. If such a situation arises, you should inform the client of the opportunity to request an Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accommodation. For procedures see: ADA Accommodation Process: Accommodation/Special Assistance Request.
You should not assume a client has a disability unless the individual has informed you of the disability or the condition is obvious, for example, an individual is blind. In no case should you assume that a particular accommodation is required. Accommodations are specific to the individual, and may vary depending on individual circumstances
If a client tells you that s/he has a physical or mental disability that limits him or her from meeting Department requirements or from utilizing Department services, that client may be requesting an ADA accommodation. The client does not need to reference the ADA or say that an accommodation is needed in order to get help.
Accordingly, requests for ADA accommodations can be made either orally or in writing. There are no magic words a client must say to request an accommodation. An ADA accommodation may be requested at any time.
Regardless of whether a client has a disability, you should be alert to responding to and assisting clients with any type of barrier that may get in the way of receiving the services the client needs. All staff (including Central Office staff with client contact and Hearings Officers) have a duty to assist all clients.
ADA Policy and Procedures