The ADA enshrined protections for disabled citizens into federal law. If your business doesn’t fulfill its obligations under the ADA, you could be exposed to a ruinous lawsuit.
Living Up To the Promise of the ADA
In 1990, President Bush signed the Americans with Disabilities Act into law. This represented a huge victory for disabled citizens and their advocates. In the years since people with disabilities have been integrated into society in an unprecedented way. Now people with disabilities are finally free to participate in modern American life. The ADA imposes accessibility lawsuits requirements on public departments and private businesses. If your website is not accessible for the disabled, you could be exposing yourself to significant civil liability.
How the ADA Affects Online Companies
When one thinks of access for the disabled, one naturally thinks of wheelchair ramps and physical infrastructure. However, courts have ruled that ADA protections extend to the digital realm as well. Website owners face a growing obligation to make their online content accessible. Federal and state laws have carved out ADA exceptions for some small businesses. Nevertheless, the language of the ADA is clear. According to the letter of the law, every business is expected to implement accessibility measures.
A Closer Look at ADA Compliance Mandates
Reportedly, public websites have already been mandated to make all digital content ADA-compliant. Even if you aren’t under any specific mandate, you’re better safe than sorry. You never know when a disgruntled person could take you to court. Furthermore, U.S. courts very much tend to rule in favor of accessibility. Every passing year, digital accessibility will become a more pressing issue in the mind of the public.
After all, digital content is becoming increasingly crucial for living a normal, effulgent life. Not every lawsuit causes a crippling financial burden. After all, many defendants are able to settle their suits out of court on favorable terms. Nevertheless, legal costs can add up quickly and devour profits. Furthermore, lawsuits can lead to terrible publicity and brand damage. If at all possible, you must avoid liability in the first place.
Web Accessibility as a Digital Service
Fortunately, a number of digital service providers can help you avoid web accessibility lawsuits. These specialists can cost-efficiently make your site accessible for the visually impaired. Web accessibility specialists help companies before and after they are confronted with lawsuits. These specialists have experience working closely with attorneys to develop winning legal strategies.
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Some companies rely on automated testing software to measure their potential liability. Sadly, this type of software generally leaves much to be desired. Accessibility tools of this nature may report false errors or fail to pick up on glaring problems. At least currently, automated site checkers just aren’t up to the task.
You really need to consult with a living, breathing person to get an accurate picture of your ADA compliance status. However, you may find that coming into full compliance is simpler and more affordable than you realized.