Here’s What Happened On Oct 7th, 2019
Businesses all over the country are now facing greater consequences if they don’t have ADA websites. On October 7th, the Supreme Court turned down an appeal from pizza giant, Domino’s, over a lower court’s ruling that the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) applies to their website, as well as their stores. In 2016, Domino’s customer, Guillermo Robles, took legal action against the company because their site was not accessible to the visually impaired. Mr. Robles is blind and claimed the site lacked the necessary software for him to communicate his order. The lower court ruled in Mr. Robles’ favor, concluding that businesses selling products and services must have ADA compliant websites or risk litigation. The Supreme Court reinforced the lower court’s ruling by refusing the appeal, stating,
“The ADA mandates that places of public accommodation, like Domino’s, provide auxiliary aids and services to make visual materials available to individuals who are blind,”
What Does It Mean?
The Supreme Court’s statement clarifies where the legal community stands on ADA compliant websites. The Justices may agree to open the issue up at a later date, especially if there are inconsistencies in the rulings of lower courts. If that happens, this situation indicates they will most likely rule in favor of plaintiffs like Mr. Robles.
What It Means For You
You need an ADA compliant website. If your business sells a product or service and doesn’t have an ADA compliant website, customers may file suits against you that they are likely to win. It is important to note that law firms who focus on cases such as these are scanning the internet for sites that don’t comply. These three main components need to work together to be ADA compliant:
- Web Content – refers to any part of a website, including text, images, forms, and multimedia, as well as any markup code, scripts, and applications
- User-Agents – software that people use to access web content, including desktop graphical browsers, voice browsers, mobile phone browsers, multimedia players, plug-ins, and some assistive technologies
- Authoring Tools – software or services that people use to produce web content, including code editors, document conversion tools, content management systems, blogs, database scripts, and other tools
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