A historic supreme court judgment last year caused a surge in website owners being sued for non-compliance with ADA. * 1500+ legal cases related to …
ADA Website Compliance
The wide variety of ADA Title III lawsuit complaints filed in federal courtroom in 2018 hit a record high of 10,163 – up 34% from 2017 number of 7,663. This is only for Federal filings. About 10% were website cases. Since we began tracking numbers in 2013, when it was at it lowest with 2,722 filings. In other words, the number of cases has more than tripled. Florida, California and New York, led the percentage increase by a huge margin as the states with the most ADA Title III complaints, with Arizona, Texas, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Alabama and New Jersey making the top ten list but trailing far in the back of Utah, Nevada, and Colorado which all fell out of the top ten in 2018, displaced by using newbies Arizona, Alabama, and Massachusetts. No ADA Title III lawsuits were filed in Montana, New Mexico, Vermont, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming in 2018.
The big news the various top three states is that New York displaced Florida as the second busiest jurisdiction. Filings in New York Store more than doubled from 2017 to 2018 (1023 vs. 2338) even as the wide variety of cases filed in Florida rose from 1488 to 1941. The variety of lawsuits filed in California rose 54% from 2751 in 2017 to 4249 in 2018. This record-breaking California number does not even encompass the many State, County and Municipal courtroom filings which we don’t track.
The fact that the California federal courts had ten internet site ADA accessibility court cases filings in 2018 may be a marvel to a few due to the fact that California continues to guide the court cases with all ADA Title III lawsuit filings in the federal courtroom. However, it appears that more plaintiffs filed their new cases in Federal court after a federal judge inside the Central District of California brushed off a website accessibility lawsuit against Dominos Pizza in 2017. The Ninth Circuit Court reversed that dismissal, making California Federal court an appealing venue for plaintiffs once again. We predict that the Ninth Circuit’s ruling which somewhat tries to sort out the variety of internet site accessibility complaints in California Federal courts to grow the number of cases dramatically in 2019 and 2020.
What are these lawsuits all about? Based on the numerous cases we see, most instances alleges inaccessible physical facilities or websites. However, there have been additionally been a number of court cases claiming that Hotel/Motels aren’t placing information about the accessibility in their physical facilities on their reservations websites as required by using the ADA rules, and a few lawsuits concerning support animals and for sign language interpreters.
Many analysts expect that the U.S. Supreme Court’s denial of evaluation of the Robles v. Domino’s Ninth Circuit choice will result in a surge of website accessibility court cases. To test this concept, we counted the number of court cases filed from January 1, 2019 to October 7, 2019 – the date the Supreme Court declined to pay attention the case. There had been 1906 website accessibility court cases filed up to and including October 7, 2019, for a daily average of 7 filings. We will see how the post-Domino’s range stacks up in the coming months.
Businesses feeling under attack by lawsuits aren’t in all likelihood to get relief any time soon. Attempts to decrease this lawsuit tsunami through federal regulation consisting of the “ADA Education and Reform Act” appear stalled in the House and are on a back burner with other Washington politics being played out.
Is Your Website ADA Compliant?
Unfortunately, There is no clear ADA regulations that spell out what exactly ADA compliant web content is, but businesses that fall under ADA Titles I or III are required to have a website that offers “reasonable accessibility” to people with disabilities.Title I is for employment and Title III is for Public accommodations and commercial facilities. Which per some court rulings include websites even without a physical location.
The ADA calls for supplementary aids in all forms of communication, which has been rules by courts as extending to online video captioning and website accessibility.
You probably already know if your site has any ADA issues but if not you can access the Web Accessibility Evaluation Tools List here https://www.w3.org/WAI/ER/tools/ Checking your business website to make sure it’s in ADA compliance is critical to avoiding ADA lawsuits and potential legal issues.
What we do at Digital Papercuts
At Digital Papercuts, ADA compliance and our SEO services coexist together, as both of them try to improve the functionality and usability of web pages. There are many ways to achieve both accessibility optimization and search engine optimization. As an example, we try to follow WCAG guidelines which dictates that HTML code should validate, that images should use alt text, and that website navigation should be intuitive and usable.
We offer an ADA Compliance Website widget for our clients so that their sites become ADA compliant. This potentially opens the door for more customers for our clients as close to 20% of the population is classified as having a disability while at the same time decreases the chance of a lawsuit being filed.
5904 Warner Ave
Huntington Beach, CA 92649