Civil Rights Commercial Real Estate

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Temporary Obstructions Are a Permanent Problem Under the Americans with Disabilities Act

Boxes, ladders, furniture or other objects commonly placed in aisles, walkways or paths may not be temporary obstructions and may be actionable under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) according to a recent ruling by...more

Three Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Anti-Retaliation Claims Fail

Courts recently issued three opinions on the whistleblower anti-retaliation provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act. In Murray v. UBS Securities, LLC, Mr. Murray claimed he was terminated because he refused to skew his...more

AODA in Brief

The Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (“AODA”) which serves as the framework for the Accessibility Standards for Customer Service (the “Customer Service Standard”) and the Integrated Accessibility...more

Deference in Decline: ECOA’s Regulation B and Agency Discretion Might Not Be Broad Enough to Include Spousal Guarantors

For more than 40 years, the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (‘‘ECOA’’) has prohibited lenders from discriminating against applicants for credit on various prohibited bases, including marital status. The policy reasons for such...more

New Accessibility Disclosure in Commercial Leases

As of July 1, 2013, California Civil Code §1938 required all commercial leases to state whether the premises have been inspected by a “Certified Access Specialist” (“CASp”) and, if so, whether the premises has or has not been...more

Evangelical Church Sues Colonie, New York, Alleges Religious Discrimination, Over Delays in Land Use Approval Process

An evangelical church, Life Covenant Church a/k/a LifeChurch.tv (“LifeChurch”), is suing Colonie, New York (“Town”), the Town’s Planning Board, certain of its members, and the Town’s attorneys over allegations that the Town’s...more

Real Estate Tip: Risky Risk Allocation

Landlords and tenants spend a good deal of time deciding how to share risk, how to insure against it, and whether or not to provide indemnities with respect to it. When the leased premises is a place of public accommodation,...more

ADA Lawyer: FedEx sued for failure to provide effective auxiliary aids and services for hearing and speech impaired employees and...

Effective communication with blind, low vision, deaf, hard-of-hearing, speech impaired and cognitively challenged employees, potential employees, customers and guests is one of the fundamental tenets of the Americans with...more

Five Holiday Season Tips for Retail Landlords

The holiday season brings many desirable things to a retail center: a fresh holiday look, a sense of excitement and anticipation, and most importantly — more traffic and customers. Along with these benefits, the holidays also...more

Disability Access Litigation on the Rise

In an article published recently in The Wall Street Journal (“Disability Lawsuits Against Small Businesses Soar,” October 15, 2014), staff writer Angus Loten reported that accessibility lawsuits brought under the Americans...more

2d Cir Extends Williamson County Ripeness "Final Decision" Requirement To ADA Claims

Ah, Williamson County. We've ranted about it before, so we won't do so here (again). But takings mavens know that a property owner must meet two tests before she can raise a takings claim against a state or local government...more

Second Circuit Restores Litchfield Synagogue's Lawsuit

A lawsuit filed by a Litchfield Jewish organization has been reinstated, giving the group new hopes it will ultimately win approval to build a 20,000-square-foot synagogue and community center near the historic...more

Court Says "Porch-Like Structures" Do Not Violate ADA

In an important decision for retailers and other public accommodations, the Tenth Circuit overturned a lower court decision requiring that every "porch-like" entrance to Hollister retail establishments be remediated to be...more

Ninth Circuit Holds That ADA Applies to Public "On-Street" Parking Even in the Absence of Adopted Technical Design Standards

Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”)1 requires states and local governments to operate and maintain public “services, programs or activities” in a manner that is “readily accessible” to the disabled. The...more

‘Steering Clear of ADA Drive-By Lawsuits’: Three Tips For Better Managing ADA-Related Risk

When I defend Virginia property owners in lawsuits involving the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), certain plaintiffs greet me warmly as I walk up to depose them. Why? Because we have seen each other so many times we are...more

DOJ Regulation Proposes New Closed Captioning Requirements

The Department of Justice has issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that will establish new closed captioning requirements for movie theaters. This proposed rule has been issued under Title III of the Americans with...more

Curb Appeal: Looks Matter When It Comes to the ADA

I’m frequently asked two questions by business owners and managers when it comes to ADA compliance and lawsuits. The first question is, “what type of businesses get sued most often?”...more

Where Minorities Fit In To Miami CRE

MIAMI—What can Miami’s commercial real estate industry do to increase minority participation? And how is CREW-Miami helping through its programs in 2014? We caught up with CREW-Miami’s 2014 president and Bilzin Sumberg...more

Mineral Matters - Winter 2014

Introduction - Welcome to the latest edition of Minerals Matters and a slightly belated Happy New Year to you all. No doubt as you read this the holiday season seems a long time ago, but hopefully you had the oppor...more

Failure to provide an Ounce of ADA Compliance is worth a Pounding by the DOJ - What you can learn from the DOJ's settlement...

The Department of Justice (DOJ) continues to make the hospitality sector a target for enforcement of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide, Inc. and The Phoenician are the latest to...more

Commercial Foreclosures and the Impact of the ADA

A. Statutory Overview When foreclosing on commercial properties, lenders and servicers must assess the liabilities to which they may be exposing themselves under various state and federal laws and regulations. One such...more

ADA Defense lawyer: Pool lift litigation proliferates. Why enterprise-wide compliance is the best solution.

It has been almost a year since the Department of Justice's ADA requirement for fixed or permanent pool lifts in "places of public accommodation" has been in effect. Now a fact (and cost) of doing business in the hospitality...more

Mandatory Disclosures Concerning Accessibility Compliance and Energy Consumption in California Commercial Properties

This article discusses two new disclosures that must be included in certain real estate contracts and leases. The disclosures pertain to Accessibility Compliance and Energy Consumption, and affect the required contents of...more

California Lease Disclosure Requirements Regarding ADA Accessibility Now In Effect

Beginning July 1, 2013, California commercial leases and rental agreements must include a disclosure regarding whether the property being leased has been inspected by a Certified Access Specialist (CASp) and, if a CASp...more

Action Required! New Commercial Lease Disclosure Concerning Disability Access Legal Requirements (California Civil Code Section...

This year, July 1 marks more than just the halfway point of the year. Effective July 1, commercial and nonresidential property owners in California have additional disclosure requirements to contend with courtesy of...more

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