ADA Compliance For Websites
Digital Accessibility vs Non-Compliance
It’s not an option for today’s businesses not to do anything. Using the excuse that I was not aware of the ADA Website Compliance laws have failed as a defense in the courts and large fines have followed. This falls under the “strict liability law”….guilty before a defense! From the out of court settlements (attorneys fees), plaintiff compensations plus the added expense to fix your website can cost you $50,000+ and more. If you decide to go to trial and fight the “demand letter” your cost can exceed $250,000. Thousands of business organizations are receiving these legal demand letters from disabled plaintiffs claiming their website is in violation of the ADA Title III law.
The law today….
Department of Justice (DOJ) reaffirms it’s position that ADA applies to all websites.
In 2018, the DOJ sent a letter to members of Congress which clarified that it believes Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) applies to the websites of public accommodations.
In the letter, it flatly states that “the ADA applies to public accommodations websites” (which is mostly all websites) and requires all businesses to include those who are disabled or impaired in their “virtual” markets and public spaces is “consistent with the ADA’s title III requirement that the goods, services, privileges, or activities provided by places of public accommodation (websites) be equally accessible to people with disabilities.”…….this has changed the digital marketing world of doing local and national business for ever…..and the effects have just started.
Below Are Examples Of Recent ADA Website Compliance Lawsuits That Were Reported And Had To Settle
What Does ADA Compliant Mean For Websites?
It means people with disabilities must have the same opportunities as everyone else while on a website. All websites must be accessible to visitors who have disabilities with their hearing, vision or physical capacities. If your website is not ADA compliant, you are wide open to be sued.
See NBC video news report below of a small business owner that had to pay.
CDC: 1 in 4 US Adults Live With A Disability
One in 4 U.S. adults – 61 million Americans – have a disability that impacts major life activities, according to a “Press Release” report in the CDC
Why Does This Matter To The Local Business And Their Website?
Local and regional businesses rely on their reputation and referrals. In this competitive market, a business who is labeled as a non-compliant business that does not care about the local disabled community is just bad practice. At the end of the day, it’s the right thing to do for all businesses to be in compliance and fully support the disabled community. It’s a win win opportunity….the businesses have access to an additional 25% more market and the disabled community has access to the businesses.
Is ADA Compliance Mandatory For Websites?
The DOJ has repeatedly held that while the ADA does not specifically address the question of website accessibility, its language is still broad enough to include websites as part of your business operation. The legal consensus is that Title III applies to all organizations that have a website and you can be sued if you’re not in compliance.
What If My Website Is Not ADA Compliant?
You are wide open for a lawsuit if a disabled person cannot access your website. You will endure legal fees, plaintiff award fees and then pay to have your website fixed to be ADA compliant. When you get a demand letter, it can cost you $25,000+ just to settle plus the expense of your website updates.
How Do I Make Sure My Website Is ADA Compliant?
4 Steps To Make Sure Your Website Is ADA Compliant:
1. Get your website evaluated and audited for compliance ASAP
2. Code your website with all the correct HTML Tags
3. Partner with an ADA Compliance Agency
4. Stay up to date on all new ADA Compliance standards
…..if you do these steps, you will not get sued.
How Much Does It Cost To Get A Website Compliant With ADA?
The ADA Compliance On Website Cost Is The Responsibility Of Every Business….But There’s Help Available
The cost to achieve the “accessibility of websites” compliance required by the ADA varies from one business to the next. Each business website is a custom made marketing asset that requires a hands on auditing process and followed by a technical review to determine the final cost so you can meet the ADA website compliance level.
The good news? There is help to pay for bringing your website into compliance from a Tax Credit of up to $5,000.00 approved by the IRS.
Under IRS Code Section 44, Disabled Access Credit, businesses who make accommodations to make their businesses accessible to persons with disabilities—including making their website accessible—can now qualify for a $5,000 tax credit.
IRS Will Pay Up To A $5,000.00 Tax Credit For a Business To Fix And Make Your Website Compliant With ADA Law……see below
What Are My Cost Options?
- Get your free website audit below ASAP…(savings of $2,000.00). This preliminary evaluation will size-up the areas that needs fixing. A comprehensive audit by our compliance expert will then likely be required to precisely estimate the full compliance remediation costs. You then have two (2) options….
- Fix Your Existing Website
- Start Clean With A Brand New ADA Compliance Website
Why Check My Website For ADA Compliance?
Google Is Watching!!
We see the scenario in the near future where Google, Yahoo and other search engines will only ranked websites that are ADA compliant. They have moved in that direction and “forced” all businesses to make their websites MOBILE FRIENDLY or lose rankings altogether. This has happened and ADA website compliance is next.
Get Your Free Website Audit Now.