Business Compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act
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What Is the Americans with Disabilities Act?
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal law that provides anti-discrimination protection for disabled individuals in areas such as:
- Public accommodations
When Is Compliance Necessary for a Business?
The Americans with Disabilities Act applies to private businesses that provide services or goods to the public. Compliance with the ADA is necessary in the following places for:
- Facilities built after 1993 or renovated after 1992
- Lodging (e.g. hotels)
- Food or drinks (e.g. restaurants)
- Public gatherings (e.g. auditoriums)
- Entertainment or exhibition (e.g. movie theaters)
- Service establishments (e.g. laundromats)
- Recreation (e.g. parks)
- Education (e.g. schools)
Owners, landlords, tenants, and other operators of public space are responsible for ADA compliance and are subject to penalties for any violations.
What Are Accommodations under the ADA?
Having ADA accommodations means that a business has provided access and adjustments for customers with disabilities. Common accommodations businesses provide are:
- Accessible parking spaces
- Accessible entrances to the building
- Slip-resistant routes
- Ramps with handrails and edge protection
- ADA compliant restrooms
- Service animals are allowed on the business premises
- Accessible tables and seating
Are There Tax Benefits for Complying with the ADA?
A business that complies with the ADA may receive tax incentives and benefits under the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Code. The tax benefits may include:
- Tax deductions: businesses may take a tax deduction of $15,000/year for providing necessary accommodations to their establishments.
- Tax credits: businesses with a prior tax year’s revenue of $1 million or less qualify for a tax credit that will cover 50% of the accommodation expenses. This tax credit is capped at $5,000.
Do I Need a Lawyer to Help with ADA Accommodation Requirements?
Yes. ADA requirements can sometimes be very complex, and may require the assistance of a personal injury lawyer or an employment lawyer. You may wish to hire lawyer if you have any questions or concerns regarding ADA requirements. An attorney can help assess your business to determine whether you are in compliance with state and local regulations.
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Last Modified: 10-28-2014 04:12 PM PDT
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