What counts as a disability for discrimination purposes?

Under the law, disability is defined as "a physical or mental impairment" that "has a substantial and long-term adverse effect' on an individual's 'ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities".

Note that the disabled worker will only be protected if the employer knew or should have been reasonably expected to have known that they were disabled So especially if your disability is ‘hidden’ (for example, some mental health conditions), if you don’t tell an employer or prospective employer about your disability, you will not be able to access the protections provided by the Equality Act.

Note: This content is provided as general background information and should not be taken as legal advice or financial advice for your particular situation. Make sure to get individual advice on your case from your union, a source on our free help page or an independent financial advisor before taking any action.