April 4, 2012
Sen. Stopping ADA Legal Battles
Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein represents California and she wants to reduce the amount of lawsuits against the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). She states that many business owners have contacted her regarding slight physical/mental challenge discrepancies to their stores in California. She wrote a letter to lawmakers voicing displeasure.
“I proudly support the ADA, and the ability it has given to people with special needs to have access to the facilities and services they require to lead healthy, productive lives,” Feinstein wrote in her letter to the state senate president. “However… I am troubled by reports that these lawsuits may unfairly and unnecessarily threaten the viability of some small businesses in our state.”
Feinstein cites a specific instance in one city. She states that the same lawyer took legal action against a business because the owners didn’t post signs close to accessible parking stating towing of violators. Business owners had to pay 5-$14,000 for the error.
Some people in California think of these lawsuits as “predatory.” Feinstein states that state law is at fault for the rise in ADA claims because it permits people who sue to receive compensation for hardship in some cases. She wants state lawmakers to debate the topic and is contemplating action at the federal level if nothing is resolved.