Many California small businesses have been sued based on claims related to the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”). Most of these ADA lawsuits are filed by a small group of plaintiffs who file thousands of lawsuits alleging they were denied access to the business due to an ADA violation. Some plaintiffs file these lawsuits as “tester plaintiffs,” meaning they do not intend to patronize the business but believe ADA violations exist at the business location.
On March 24, 2023, the U.S. Supreme Court (“USSC”) agreed to hear the case of Acheson Hotels, LLC v. Laufe, which will determine whether a tester plaintiff has the right to sue (i.e. standing) based on alleged ADA violations that they did not personally experience. The USSC’s decision will settle conflicting decisions by lower courts on this topic. If the USSC rules that tester plaintiffs do not have standing to file these ADA lawsuits, it could reduce the number of ADA lawsuits filed in federal court because the plaintiff would need to visit the business and personally experience an alleged ADA violation. USSC is expected to issue a final ruling on this case in 2024.
If your company has received notice of an ADA complaint, you are contemplating entering into a commercial lease not knowing whether ADA accessibility could be an issue, or want legal advice on what you should do in your workplace to minimize your risk of an ADA lawsuit while making your business more accessible, contact the attorneys at Chauvel & Glatt.
The material in this article, provided by Chauvel & Glatt, is designed to provide informative and current information as of the date of the post. It should not be considered, nor is it intended to constitute, legal advice or promise similar outcomes. For information on your particular circumstances, please contact Chauvel & Glatt at 650-573-9500.