House of Representatives Passes Changes to ADA to Curb “Drive-By Lawsuits”
On February 15, 2018, the US House of Representatives passed legislation that would amend the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in an effort to stem “drive-by” lawsuits – so called because the lawyers who threaten them (and the plaintiffs they represent) often do not physically inspect the premises or intend to patronize the businesses they sue. Under the bill passed by the House (H.R. 620, titled the ADA Education and Reform Act), those wishing to sue businesses in federal court over an alleged ADA public accommodation violation must first deliver written notice to the business detailing the alleged barrier to access, and then give that business up to 60 days to come up with a remediation plan and an additional 60 days to take action. Currently, no such “notice and cure” requirement exists, and plaintiffs are free to file suit without providing any notice to businesses regarding the alleged ADA violations. The House legislation would also require the US Department of Justice to establish a program for educating businesses on how to enhance accommodations for individuals with disabilities.
*This alert was originally posted on Arent Fox's Fashion Counsel blog. To read this alert in its entirety, please click here.