There are law firms trolling bank and credit union websites. If they find that the site does not meet Americans With Disability Act (ADA) standards for the visually impaired, they send you a letter demanding you fix your site and pay them not to sue you.
I got three calls on this last week from clients. All claimed they had not received a letter. They were asking a hypothetical coverage question. This morning, a banker called me with a letter in his hand.
Call your web designer and ask about ADA compliance. There is no way to describe this besides extortion. However, do you really want an article in your local paper saying you are being sued by a disability advocacy group?
The following is a piece in my newsletter from last January on this issue…
January 29, 2016 — Demand Letter Americans With Disability Act Website Compliance
A client got a letter yesterday from the law firm of Carlson Lynch demanding damages and alleging that the company’s website was not ADA compliant. While this was not a bank, it is a relatively small business. I can certainly see such a letter going to banks around the US.
I wanted to get the word out.
The idea is that websites have been found to be covered by the ADA and that access by the visually impaired is required.
We can agree that legal actions like this are extortion. Still, getting such a letter will cause you time and attention and perhaps money. It might be well worth your while to ask your web design team if your site is accessible to the visually impaired.
Perhaps there are some simple changes that can be made.
Here is a short article on the law firm and the huge number of lawsuits filed.
Google “Carlson Lynch ADA” to get more info on the legal issues. Other law firms may be doing the same thing.
I’m working on the insurance coverage angle (complicated at best). Though I would bet most of these are settled for well below what most banks have for a deductible.