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Section 5: Employment Laws

Are TBI and PTSD considered disabilities under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)?

The ADA does not contain a list of medical conditions that constitute disabilities. Instead, the ADA defines a person with a disability as:

  • Having a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities*,
  • Having a record of such an impairment, or
  • Being regarded as having such an impairment.

Therefore, some people with TBI and/or PTSD will have a disability under the ADA and some will not.

*Major life activities include, but are not limited to, caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, seeing, hearing, eating, sleeping, walking, standing, lifting, bending, speaking, breathing, learning, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating, and working. For more information about how to determine whether a person has a disability under the ADA, visit

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