If your website is not compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, it’s leaving you open to a class action lawsuit.
NJBIA recently received an email from a member whose company was hit with just such a lawsuit. In short, courts have ruled that business websites are public places and as such, must make accommodations for people with disabilities. For websites, this means providing access for those who are visually impaired.
Jackson Lewis wrote about the issue in 2017, saying:
“For years, lawsuits under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act concerning places of public accommodation were confined to brick-and-mortar physical barriers, such as steps, excessive slopes in parking lots, and routes that were too narrow for individuals in wheelchairs to use. Now, in the e-commerce age, lawsuits complaining that businesses websites are not accessible to vision-impaired users in violation of Title III are on the rise.”
Unfortunately, federal regulators have not clarified matters. As a result, lawsuits have surged. The Wall Street Journal reported that 2,250 such lawsuits were filed last year alone. (Read it here. Subscription may be required.)