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Americans with Disabilities Act Accommodations

Congress passed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in 1990. The ADA is a landmark civil rights law that requires private businesses open to the public to provide accessibility to disabled patrons and visitors. This includes any area open to the public such as parking lots.

Washington businesses can be sued for failing to provide ADA-required accommodations. Property owners can also face lawsuits if their failure to comply with the ADA leads to a person suffering serious injury on their premises. If you have been injured in such an accident, the experienced lawyers at the Emerald Law Group can review your case and represent you in any legal action seeking compensation.

Suing Property Owners for Negligence and Failing to Comply with the ADA

The ADA broadly covers anyone with a “disability,” which is any diagnosed mental or physical impairment that substantially limits a person’s ability to independently participate in one or more life activities, such as seeing, speaking, or walking. Private property owners who open their premises to the public must make certain reasonable accommodations for recognized disabilities. To give a common example, if a building requires a staircase to access the entrance, the owner must also provide an entrance ramp or an equivalent means for people in wheelchairs to enter the building.

The ADA contains its own civil remedies independent of personal injury law. This means that if you are unable to access a building due to the owner’s failure to provide a reasonable accommodation, you could file a lawsuit on the basis of disability discrimination even if you were not injured in an accident on the property. But if you were also injured physically due to the owner’s failure to comply with the ADA, you can cite that non-compliance as proof of the owner’s negligence in a subsequent personal injury lawsuit.

In many cases, the owner will claim they did comply with the ADA. But further investigation reveals said compliance was an illusion. For instance, the property owner may provide a ramp for wheelchair access but it was not built to code and as a result collapsed when someone actually tried to use it. The ADA requires owners to follow the law in good faith and not take improper shortcuts just to save a few dollars.

Contact Emerald Law Group Today

If you have been injured due to a property owner’s negligence in failing to follow the ADA, you can sue to recover a variety of monetary damages, including compensation for your medical bills, loss of income, replacement of your disability equipment, and your ongoing pain and suffering due to the accident. A qualified Seattle disabled access to buildings and parking lots lawyer can sit down with you, review your case, and help you decide the best course of action for seeking compensation. So if you would like to speak to an attorney, contact the Emerald Law Group today to schedule a consultation.

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