Originally passed in 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act was designed to ensure access to, and prohibit discrimination against, disabled individuals in the areas of employment, transportation, public accommodations, communications and access to state and local government’ programs and services. But as with many other laws, the ADA continues to be interpreted as societal changes demand.
The internet has become one major area of continuous change. Considering the impact of digital activities on all of our lives, it is no surprise that the ADA has repeatedly been interpreted by courts as falling under the umbrella of ADA regulations. So, what does that mean for your law firm’s website?
First, any business with a physical location is also expected to ensure ADA compliance online. That means their website must provide accessibility to all who visit.
Also, even businesses that operate exclusively online are now subject to the law. Between 2018 and 2019, more than 4500 lawsuits addressed the issue of ADA non-compliance online. The state of California ranked number 3 in the country for the most suits filed.
Since it is unlikely that standards will regress from this point, it would be wise for business owners to consider the legal ramifications of operating a non-compliant website from this point forward.
So, what do you need to know about ADA compliance in 2021 and going forward?
Compliance standards are complex. There is no one single “compliance upgrade” that a website owner can make, that ensures complete accessibility for everyone. For example, website users with visual impairments need certain modifications that are actually quite different from those needed by the blind. ADA compliance measures are diverse, and sometimes it is not possible to achieve 100 percent accessibility for everyone. The goal is to get as close to 100 percent as reasonably possible.
Compliance can and will change over time. As technology evolves, new tools are developed to increase compliance in different areas. Also, websites tend to grow as new content is added, so new pages, pictures, blogs and so on must be ADA compliant as well. Compliance should be viewed as an ongoing effort, not a “once and done” proposition.
Discovering your current level of ADA compliance is the first step. Our free compliance report can help you evaluate your website’s current level of compliance and identify changes that should be made.
Although complex, achieving ADA compliance does not have to be difficult. Getting started is as easy as installing our software, which can help you attain ADA compliance within about 24 hours.
From that point, the software will scan your website daily to assess compliance. This will help you ensure that new content, added over time, is compliant with current standards. Website owners receive a certificate of compliance each month that will provide proof of their efforts.
Contact us to learn more about this software and how the system works. We will help you assess your current compliance level, install the software, and make any necessary changes to keep your website compliant with current ADA standards.