The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) recently reiterated its intent to enforce website accessibility standards under the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA). The DOJ is focusing on ensuring that covered entities provide ready access for the disabled to their websites. In short, the ADA accessibility rules cover anyone (governmental or private entities) that opens its doors to the public, including places of lodging, retailers, restaurants, medical facilities, banks, local governments and schools. The DOJ has consistently maintained the position that websites operated by covered entities are “public accommodations,” and recent court decisions have supported this view. The courts have reasoned that websites serve as extensions of and invitations to the physical structures that serve as more traditional public accommodations.
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