Selecting ADA compliant products for your business allows your company to fully serve people from all walks of life. This alone is reason enough to make sure that your business is ADA compliant. However, deciding not to follow the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act can also land you in legal hot water.
Since the ADA was made law in 1990, businesses have been expected to make their facilities accessible to individuals with disabilities. This accessibility includes specific ADA sign regulations, among many other expectations for equal access.
An Increase in ADA Lawsuits for Businesses
Lately, there appears to be an increase in lawsuits against businesses who have not followed the ADA exactly. It is extremely important to completely follow the ADA regulations. Failure to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act can result in expensive fines and negative attention for your business.
Here’s a look at some recent lawsuits that were filed by customers seeking equal access to a facility:
Lawsuit Against Willits, California City Properties
The City of Willits, California recently settled a lawsuit that was filed last year by a plaintiff who uses a wheelchair. In the lawsuit, it was alleged that some of the city’s properties, such as City Hall, were not compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Along with building adjustments, one of the changes the city needed to make was to add an ADA unisex bathroom sign leading visitors to the newly created unisex restroom. Aside from the changes, the city also paid over $100,000 in damages to the plaintiff.
Lawsuit Against Los Angeles City College
A college student with a visual impairment recently filed a lawsuit claiming that Los Angeles City College wasn’t properly following the requirements of the ADA in multiple ways, including by having an inaccessible website and missing restroom signs. The college was ordered to make timely, specific changes, particularly to its technologies, and the plaintiff was granted $40,000.
Lawsuit Against Palestine City Athletic Complex in Palestine, Texas
The City of Palestine, Texas decided to close its athletic complex following a lawsuit alleging that the facility was in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The City explained that, as the years with the Complex progressed, work to bring the facility to the standards of the ADA was not done. As a result, it is currently unable to afford the cost to bring the building into compliance and must close the Complex, instead. This has resulted in multiple sports teams and groups to be unable to play at the facility.
Websites: An Increasingly Common Problem
One area of ADA compliance that has been in the news lately actually relates to websites. It is extremely important to have an accessible website for people who are visually impaired. This overlooked area of the ADA has resulted in an extraordinary number of lawsuits recently, including lawsuits filed against over 50 New York art galleriesand major businesses.
Following ADA Regulations: A Priority
The best way to avoid the hefty fines and negative publicity associated with these lawsuits is to completely follow the ADA regulations. The sooner that you can begin the work on being an accessible business, the less likely you will find yourself embroiled in a costly legal battle. You’ll also, of course, find that the accessibility of your business will result in happier customers or visitors that come back again and again. Becoming and staying ADA complaint sends a positive message about your company, and can help your business continue to thrive.
ADA Compliance: Begin with 2019 ADA Sign Regulations
Reading the ADA requirements is often confusing and overwhelming for businesses. At ADA Central, we understand the complexities of the Americans with Disabilities Act. You can trust us to provide you with signage that fully complies with ADA sign regulations. Contact us for more information on how we can assist your business or request an ADA sign quote today. Also learn how to make your signage more inclusive.