2014: The Year Small Businesses Get Relief from ADA Lawsuit Abuse
When president George Bush signed the Americans Disabilities Act in 1990, he had only the best intentions.
Quickly, however, unscrupulous attorneys in league with disabled individuals began to sue small businesses for failing to provide accessible bathrooms. The frightening aspect is that something as simple as an improperly installed bathroom fixture could set a business owner up for a lawsuit costing them $5,000 to $35,000, the typical range in California. ADA lawsuits abuse became a way for several individuals to support themselves full time.
While passage of ADA legislation resulted in additional plumbing work, conscientious San Diego plumbing contractors were just as worked up about the abuse of the ADA as their clients were. It’s taken over twenty years, but small businesses have just begun to win some protections from frivolous lawsuits while disabled Californians still get the accommodations they deserve.
Recent legislation has put an end to the abuse of the American Disabilities Act. First, Governor Jerry Brown enacted measure SB 1186 which reduced litigant awards from $4,000 to $1,000.
In December 2013, the California Supreme Court created an even stronger deterrent when they ruled that that plaintiffs who lose ADA lawsuits are liable for defendant’s attorneys’ fees. In other words, in the “carrot and stick” system, these two measures decreased the size of the carrot while increasing that of the stick. Litigants, now identified as potential perpetrators of ADA lawsuit abuse, now have less to gain and far more to lose. With thousands of dollars at stake, it’s not surprising that in 2014 San Diego plumbing contractors have seen a reduction in work requests on handicap bathrooms.
Careful ADA Compliance
We are happy to see businesses ensuring that their facilities welcome all Americans. Beyond accommodating customers, accessible facilities expand the business’ client base!
At Perry Plumbing, we make sure the fixtures we recommend are ADA compliant. Kohler, American Standard, Plumbing Supply Co and more offer these items in a wide variety of styles and materials. Still, we are careful to check the product with the ADA compliance website. This extra step reassures clients, technicians and plumbing company owners and executives!
Proper installation, too, must be ADA compliant. We are determined to ensure that our clients’ new bathrooms are up to county plumbing code in every way. Paying attention to everything from pipe spacing in drywall to proper, ADA fixtures constitutes doing our due diligence.
Perry Plumbing Has Helped All Types of Businesses Become ADA Compliant
If you’ve learned you’ll need to install a handicap accessible bathroom, don’t hesitate to call us at 619-472-2112. We’re currently offering great San Diego plumbing discounts and specials you can use. Up front pricing and no travel time charges keep you in control of the budget. Interested in getting great plumbing tips you can use to increase the value of your home and stave off plumbing emergencies? Visit our website www.perryplumbing.com for your special discounts now!