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Lawsuits alleging ADA violations plague Florida businesses

Running a business can be difficult and stressful under the best of circumstances. Facing a lawsuit is never easy for Miami business owners, especially when there is so much at stake.

Some businesses in Florida have been the targets of lawsuits alleging that they are in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Unlike in other states where businesses have a grace period to comply with the ADA and correct any violations, lawsuits in Florida can proceed without any such allowance. While legislation has been sponsored in the past proposing such a grace period, no law has yet been enacted.

Apparently, one man in particular is behind many of these ADA lawsuits. In fact, he has filed 1,114 out of the 5,839 suits that were filed in Florida in the last four years. Many of the business owners are reeling, particularly since the man is suing some businesses he has never even patronized. While some of the alleged violations are serious, others are more minor and could easily be fixed by the businesses, given the opportunity.

The man behind the lawsuits has indicated that his aim is not to profit from these litigations and that he would be in support of a grace period being instituted. However, this is little comfort for the companies that are sued. One owner reported spending $20,000 in order to settle the matter out of court and make changes to his property.

Being sued can be costly and time consuming for Florida companies. Business owners who are facing lawsuits may wish to consult with an experienced attorney.

Source: WPTV, “Crippled Florida businesses seek help over serial ADA suers,” Katie LaGrone, Matthew Apthorp, Nov. 21, 2016

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