Recently, law firm Seyfarth Shaw found that Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Title III lawsuits are up 63 percent since 2015. ADA Title III prohibits businesses open to the public from discriminating based on disability. What qualifies as a disability is broad and the act applies to a slew of businesses and restaurants. Some people that need to remain ADA-compliant are warehouses, movie theaters, schools, office buildings, day care facilities, doctor’s offices and construction, but every business should make an effort to be inclusive.
More lawsuits were filed in the first half of 2016 than in all of 2013, with over 7,000 federal suits filed, and countless professional liability insurance claims. With that many complaints being filed, it’s no wonder that any business would want to stay ADA-complaint. Here’s why your business needs to be ADA-compliant and what it’ll cost you if you aren’t.
It’s The Law
All businesses are monitored by the Department of Justice, setting the standard for ADA compliance. If someone feels like your business did not do enough to service their needs, they can file a complaint and subsequently go to court. A penalty from the DOJ can cost upwards of $150,000.
It Helps You Get and Keep Customers
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, one in five Americans are disabled in some sort of way. The disability-rights group labeled APSE (The Association of People Supporting Employment First) found that the disabled and their families account for over a $3 trillion market segment.
The population is getting older. It’s time to cater to them. Advances in medical technology mean that people are living longer. That means the disabled community is going to grow and continue to stay large, with those people needing accommodation.
Word of Mouth Advertising
In the age of the Internet and social media, word can travel very far very quickly these days. If you aren’t ADA-compliant, it's very likely that the rest of your community will find out about it, and that could be trouble for your business.
Socially Responsible Businesses Are More Attractive
The more socially responsible a business is, the better. More people will want to come back to your business again and again.
Tax Write-Offs and Financial Assistance
Not only is it socially responsible, but it can also be used a tax-write off. That means you’ll get your money back for the work you put in. Deductions can be up to $15,000 a year.
Compliance Doesn't Need to Be Expensive
It doesn’t cost much. Plans can be worked out for further accessibility. Other reasons to be ADA-compliant include room for creativity, the benefit of all communities when everyone participates and answers for ADA issues are often easy to find.
About Axis Insurance
At Axis Insurance Services, we aim to help our customers identify their exposures and protect themselves. Founded in 1999, we offer insurance programs to a wide variety of professionals and industries including attorneys, real estate, healthcare, architects, and more, and also have a wholesale division. We pride ourselves on offering flexible insurance coverage tailored specifically to each customer’s needs. To learn more about our solutions, contact us at (201) 847-9175 to speak with one of our professionals.