ADA Compliant Legal Websites
Your legal website should be designed to reach as many clients as possible,
which means it must be accessible to individuals with certain disabilities who
may struggle with accessing or reading content on traditional websites.
Americans with Disabilities Act
Enacted in 1990, the ADA requires that all “places of public accommodation” remove barriers that would limit access by disabled individuals. At the time, evolving technologies like the web were in their infancy and hence were not taken into consideration under the law as drafted. To address the impact of the law on digital access, the US Department of Justice (DOJ), the agency tasked with enforcing the ADA, has issued an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking which seeks to amend the language in Title III of the ADA. The DOJ’s directive intends to “Establish requirements for making the goods, services, facilities, privileges, accommodations, or advantages offered by public accommodations via the Internet, specifically at sites on the World Wide Web (Web), accessible to individuals with disabilities.” Additionally, the DOJ has consistently stated that the ADA applies to the internet.
Lawsuits Against Web Operators Under the ADA
In the last few years, hundreds of lawsuits have been filed against online retailers and other commercial enterprises over allegedly inaccessible websites. While the DOJ has not provided any sort of formal technical requirements that developers need to consider when creating accessible websites, they have pointed to the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) as a guide for web developers.
Under WCAG 2.1, website content must be:
Content must be available in multiple forms, all information viewable through text, with distinguishable page elements for visual impairments (e.g., color blindness)
Site can be navigated in multiple ways
Pages must be readable and predictable and navigation through the site must be consistent
Site is compatible with assistive technologies or can be interpreted with multiple user agents such as screen readers
Accessible Law Firm Websites
Zola Creative offers WCAG 2.1 compliant websites for law firms and legal organizations who wish to broaden the reach of their website’s content.
How Can I Check if My Current Site is ADA Compliant?