In 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into federal law. This act, which falls under the category of a civil rights law, sought to protect the rights of Americans with disabilities in all public spaces. This law protects almost one-fourth of Americans (an estimated 61 million people or more) who live with a disability from discrimination. As business owners, this law applies to the way you conduct business, including your operations over the Internet. Learn why you need to be ADA-compliant. 

1. Protection From Fines and Legal Action

If your business is not ADA compliant, you’re operating with considerable and potentially costly risk on a day-to-day basis. As long as you are not ADA-compliant, you are violating federal law. Fines for this begin around $100,000 per violation and up to $150,000 per each additional reported violation. Your business is exposed to potential lawsuits daily while not compliant.

Know that this Act’s reach has expanded to include coverage of public domains on the internet, and penalties can also be levied on websites that don’t make an effort to be accessible to all people. The World Wide Web Consortium has developed a series of guidelines, known as the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), to help guide business owners on how to reach and maintain ADA compliance in this rapidly growing and expanding public arena. 

2. Being ADA Compliant Widens Your Appeal 

The 60 million people who are protected by ADA are part of your consumer base whether you realize it or not. By not being ADA compliant, you run the risk of alienating a vast number of potential clients, ultimately hurting your own business as well as your clientele. 

When you show that your business cares about the needs of everyone, you demonstrate a strong sense of social responsibility and goodwill. 

3. Tax Benefits

Given the potential expenses of renovating your physical location to comply with ADA standards, the federal government offers a tax credit toward these improvements. Download the ADA Fact Sheet to learn more about qualifying for these potential tax benefits.

4. Accessibility Protects From Discrimination 

Every day, people of all kinds enter into the public domain to conduct business. For internet interactions, having an accessible website can allow people with disabilities such as: 

  1. Hearing deficits or deafness.
  2. Vision impairment or blindness. 
  3. Dyslexia or other reading disabilities.

There are simple ways to add accessibility features to your website that can help people with such disabilities navigate your web page with ease. 

For brick-and-mortar business operations, accessibility changes allow for increased mobility for people such as the elderly, those in wheelchairs, people recovering from injuries, and even parents with children in strollers. 

Many others beyond this list benefit from the relief that ADA-compliant businesses provide, leading to more happy consumers and better business practices. 

Get Help Becoming ADA-Compliant

Being ADA-compliant is important for your business as well as your consumers.

Partner with VisionPath to ensure that your marketing and website remain in compliance of ADA regulations. Contact us to learn more about this service as well as our other digital marketing offerings.