Maintenance of Accessible Features

CaptureBy John W. Egan

Despite the url ( and frequent federal focus of this blog, it is important to remember that many states and municipalities have their own disability access laws and regulations with which businesses must comply. Although many state and local requirements are similar to the ADA, this is not always the case.

Usually we’re reporting
Continue Reading New York Law Creates Quandary for Businesses with New “Accessible Icon”

By Eden Anderson

As we have previously noted, Title III of the ADA requires that public accommodations provide, at their expense, “auxiliary aids and services” to ensure “effective communication” with persons with hearing disabilities.  The “nature, length, complexity, and context of the communication” at issue and the individual’s “normal method of communication” must be considered before assessing whether a
Continue Reading Court Holds That Hospital Does Not Have To Provide Live Interpreter For Patient “In The Throes Of A Serious Heart Attack” Where Other Effective Means Provided

As we’ve previously reported, new Department of Justice rules give individuals with mobility disabilities the right under the ADA to use a wide variety of non-traditional powered mobility devices in public accommodations facilities.  The lawsuits and complaints about this issue are on the rise so businesses should familiarize themselves with this issue to avoid expensive lawsuits.

On Thursday March
Continue Reading Seyfarth Title III Team To Present Webinar on Segway Use

By Chris Palamountain

Over a year after beginning the effort, the Access Board’s Medical Diagnostic Equipment Accessibility Standards Advisory Committee ended 2013 by issuing its final report on accessibility standards for medical equipment.  This report comments on and recommends technical requirements to ensure the accessibility of certain types of medical equipment to persons with disabilities.  The report covers a wide
Continue Reading Access Board Advisory Committee Issues Report on Medical Diagnostic Equipment

By Minh Vu and Paul Kehoe

As we reported earlier this month, the Department of Transportation (DOT) issued regulations under the Air Carrier Access Act (ACA) making it easier for airline passengers with disabilities to access both airline websites and terminal kiosks.  These regulations provide a window into the Administration’s view of website and kiosk accessibility, and likely serve as a precursor to forthcoming regulations from the Department of Justice (DOJ) on these subjects for state/local governments and public accommodations.  Since all agencies have an opportunity to review proposed regulations during the interagency review process, we assume that DOJ had input into the new DOT rules.  Here is a closer look at key parts of the new DOT regulations:

Basic Website Requirements.  Airlines that operate at least one aircraft having a seating capacity of more than 60 passengers must make their primary website accessible in two phases.  First, by December 12, 2015, they must ensure that web pages on their primary website associated with core travel information and services (reservations, online check-in, flight status updates, itinerary access, frequent flyer account access, carrier contact information, etc.) conform with WCAG 2.0 Level AA.  Second, by December 12, 2016, all other webpages on the airline’s primary website must conform with these guidelines. The regulations also require airlines to consult with individuals with visual, auditory, tactile and cognitive disabilities, or organizations representing these disability types to test the usability of the updated websites.  The DOT did not indicate what, if anything, covered airlines should be doing to facilitate access for those individuals who cannot use the websites in the meantime.

The regulations also require airlines to provide web-based fare discounts, which are generally offered at a lower cost, and other web-based amenities, to customers with disabilities who are unable to use the airline’s website.  Also, ticket agents that are not small businesses will be required to provide the same web-based fares to customers with a disability who cannot use the agents’ website as of June 10, 2014.
Continue Reading New Department of Transportation Website and Kiosk Regulations Provide Insight into Forthcoming Department of Justice Regulations for Public Accommodations

By Minh N. Vu

Last week, the Department of Transportation (DOT) issued final regulations that govern the websites and automated kiosks of U.S. and foreign air carriers.  The regulations have not yet been officially published in the Federal Register but we wanted to get the news (and the regulations) to you as soon as possible. We will post more meaningful
Continue Reading Department of Transportation Issues Final Rule Requiring Airline Websites and Self-Service Kiosks to be Accessible

By Minh N. Vu

The Department of Justice’s (DOJ) deadline for hotels, health clubs, and other public accommodations to retrofit their existing pools and spas with either a pool lift or sloped entry ramp is January 31, 2013.  Under regulations the DOJ issued in 2010, all pools with less than 300 linear feet of wall must have either a pool
Continue Reading Businesses With Swimming Pools and Spas Work to Install Lifts by January 31, 2013

We proudly announce the American Hotel & Lodging Association’s publication of the first-of-its kind Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Guide for Lodging Owners and Operators, authored by Minh N. Vu with contributions from Karen StephensonKristina Launey, and Laura Robinson.  The AH&LA developed this comprehensive, 80-page, guide to provide owners and operators of places of lodging
Continue Reading Now Available: AH&LA’s Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) Guide For Lodging Owners And Operators