Updated: Mar 1
In lieu of the growing number of lawsuits, website designers and business owners have growing concerns about making their websites ADA compliant and avoiding unwanted legal action. According to Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), certain businesses have to make accommodations for people with disabilities.
These accommodations also transcends to the digital world, more specifically for website users. Here is a simplied list of the requirements:
Web content should be accessible to the blind, deaf, and those who must navigate by voice, screen readers or other technologies.
Businesses that fall under Title I, those that operate 20 or more weeks per year with at least 15 full-time employees, or Title III, those that fall under the category of "public accommodation," are covered by the ADA.
There are no clear regulations defining website accessibility.
Failure to create an ADA-compliant website could open a business to lawsuits, financial liabilities and damage to your brand reputation.
Attorney's are filing lawsuits as FAST as they can!
According to the Business News Daily, "the federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is often associated with physical locations and accommodations certain businesses must make for people with disabilities. These accommodations typically include wheelchair accessibility, access to service animals and the use of Braille for customers who are visually impaired. However, the ADA also extends to the digital realm, requiring businesses
to ensure web content is accessible to all users."
So who does this apply to?
One thing to understand is that there are specific requirements listed to determine if your business is required to comply. If your business falls under Title I or Title III, definitely consult with an disabilities attorney. After contacting an attorney, speak with your website developer to make sure your website is updated according to the latest legal requirements.
Are there any guidelines?
"As far as websites go, there is no federally codified direction on how to make websites comply," said David Engelhardt, a New York City-based small business attorney. "We only know that the ADA does apply to websites based on cases, such as [Gil v. Winn-Dixie]."
Here are a few recommended website check lists to help guide you in making your website more accessible.
Failure to comply means what?
Your business is susceptible to a lawsuit and cases like these come with a hefty price tag. Many attorney's are intentionally seeking out websites that do not meet the requirements or provide any accommodations. Don't let this be you or your client.
Failing to provide this information to your clients could easily result in a loss business and affect your reputation as a website developer.
What CBMRSC is doing?
As a marketing - design agency and business resource center we provide our clients with access to an attorney and a website development specialist to make sure our clients are protected and have piece of mind.
We don't just care about their businesses looking good online but being good also.