ADA Compliance & Your Website

You may or may not be aware, but your business’s website is subject to the Americans with Disabilities Act. If it is not compliant you face the same liability as if some structural or physical aspect of your community is not ADA compliant. To be compliant your website must meet WCAG 2.1 standards (as of the date of this article). How do you know if your website meets these standards? We have no idea, but a business operating a website (a/k/a business) should invest in a website accessibility consultant with knowledge of the WCAG 2.1 standards.

A little more about the WCAG. The WCAG 2.1, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, provides public accommodations via the internet, specifically at sites on the World Wide Web, accessible to individuals with disabilities which extends protections under the American with Disability Act. Although this added protection ensures accessibility to individuals with disabilities who use computers, laptops, tablets, and smart phones, it is an added layer of liability for business owners operating a website.

As with other ADA related issues no one has to actually be injured, damaged, or even inconvenienced for you to be liable. The mere fact that you are not compliant is enough to create liability. This kind of like speeding on an empty highway. No one needs to be in any remote risk of injury, but you can still get a ticket. The NAA has continually worked on passing legislation providing that some sort of notice would need to be sent to the possibly incompliant entity and a cure period would be allowed before there is any liability. Unfortunately, we are not there yet.

Website accessibility to persons with a disability is a fairly new standard for businesses to adhere to. The right website accessibility consultant with WCAG 2.1 knowledge can ensure that the website is compliant with the ADA standards to protect against unwanted claims.