We work with clients to provide accessibility that generates a quality consumer experience at their business or facility. Accessibility barriers may frequently include, but are not limited to, elements such as:
Parking spaces and aisles
Ramps and curb ramps
NEW! Florida Statute 553.5141: Accessibility of Places of Public Accommodations Act
Florida enacted an accessibility law effective July 1, 2017. This new law authorizes owners of a place public accommodation to file a certificate of conformity or a remediation plan with the Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR). A place of public accommodation is defined by the Department of Justice as private entities that own, operate, or lease to places of public accommodation. Title III commercial facilities and private entities or agencies that offer certain examinations and courses related to educational or occupational certification. The main point of the definition is that public accommodations are a facility whose operations affect commerce and are included in one of the following 12 categories: places of lodging. establishments serving food or drink, places of exhibition or entertainment, places of public gathering, sales or rental establishments, service establishments, public transportation terminals, places of public display or collection, places of recreation, places of education, social service centers, places of exercise or recreation. Private clubs and religious organizations are exempt from the ADA’s Title III requirements for public accommodations, unless portions of the facility are rented out to the public.
Overview of NEW Florida Law:
- Creates a certification type for ADA experts.
- Requires the DBPR to establish certification requirements and regulations for ADA experts.
- Allows ADA experts to determine if businesses are ADA compliant.
- Allows businesses to hire ADA experts who file expert reports with DBPR.
- Requires DBPR to establish a public website with a registry or remediation plans, certifications of conformity, and ADA experts.
- Requires courts to consider remediation plans to determine if a plaintiff filed a claim in good faith and whether the plaintiff is entitled to attorney’s fees in
lawsuits involving alleged ADA violations.
Property360 is uniquely qualified to work with your business under the new Florida law. We have performed ADA Accessibility Surveys across Florida and throughout the United States. We have the qualifications, expertise, and experience to be your ADA expert.
It takes some research to find the right consultant for you and your business needs. Contact us today and allow us to sort through the facts, come up with a plan, and offer creative, hopefully economical, ways to work toward compliance. Coming into compliance should be part of an action plan to grow your business by reaching more customers, not a stressful and expensive scenario that makes you want out of your business.
Services We Offer:
Tier II Abbreviated Accessibility Survey Post Construction Inspection
Tier III Full Accessibility Survey Consultant Service
Electronic Report Training
Implementation/ Remediation Plan Expert Witness/ Testimony
Visit www.ADAConsultant.Guru for more information from our certified ICC Accessibility Inspector/ Plans Examiner and Certified Safety Professional (CSP).
BUYER: Why is an ADA Survey important in a pre-purchase, due diligence property inspection?
First, contrary to popular opinion, buildings are not “grandfathered” and you may be taking ownership of a facility which is in non-compliance to the ADA Standard. As the new owner, you may be forced to bring the facility into compliance and possibly be fined.
Second, bringing the property into ADA compliance can be accomplished with the generation of and execution of an implementation plan to remove readily achievable barriers.
Third, the ADA is not a building code – it is Civil Rights legislation enacted by Congress and the guidelines and enforcement is ultimately administered by the US Department of Justice.
We work with commercial realtors, property owners, property managers, and attorneys across the country who proactively address a property’s accessibility. This allows their buyers to negotiate successfully. Sellers, in order to prevent disruptive lawsuits, should understand barrier removal and the advantages of having an implementation plan. A property in litigation can rarely be sold.
As an ADA Consultant we can help you use this instrument to its full potential. Whether you need an accessibility survey performed, an implementation plan developed, employee and/or staff training, or other services tailored to your specific needs, we will provide you with professional and knowledgeable service.
More than 50 million Americans – 18% of our population – have disabilities, and each is a potential customer. People with disabilities are living more independently and participating more actively in their communities. They and their families want to patronize businesses that welcome customers with disabilities
Studies show that once people with disabilities find a business where they can shop or get services in an accessible manner, they become repeat customers.
CURRENT OWNER: Why should I worry about ADA compliance as I have owned my business for several years?
Building age: Existing facilities, regardless of age, which were not compliant with the 1991 Standard, must come into compliance with the 2010 Standard. There is no grandfather clause for older buildings; however, there are accommodations for registered historic buildings and churches.
Alterations/ modifications done: Remodeling, renovation, structural changes, wall changes, reconstruction, historic restoration or other building modification requiring a permit is an alteration. The ADA does not consider normal maintenance, re-roofing, painting, wallpapering, asbestos removal, or changes to electrical and mechanical systems to be alterations unless they affect usability. According to the ADA requirements, when altering a primary function area, the Path of Travel elements supporting this space are required to be altered as well. What does this mean? This means the continuous route connecting the altered area to an entrance, including phones, restrooms, and drinking fountains that, where provided, serve the altered area are to be made accessible as well. This may, in fact, involve modifications outside of the altered area.
Implementation/ remediation plan: Business owners, in order to prevent disruptive lawsuits, should understand barrier removal and the advantages of having an implementation/ remediation plan.
Businesses cannot afford to be out of ADA compliance. Private individuals may bring lawsuits in which they can obtain court orders to stop discrimination and file for damages. Individuals may also file complaints with the Attorney General, who is authorized to bring lawsuits in cases of general public importance or where a pattern or practice of discrimination is alleged.
Types of simple changes for compliance:
- Automatic door closers
- Installation of handrail extensions
- Upgrade van accessible spaces to one in six versus one in eight with compliant signage
- Grab bars
- Accessible upgrades to swimming pools such as pool lifts, sloped entries, transfer walls/systems.
TENANT: Won’t the landlord be responsible for ADA compliance?
Duty to provide access: Both the landlord and the tenant have certain rights and responsibilities when it comes to ADA compliance. In most cases, neither the landlord nor the tenant will be able to legally state that they are relieved from their duty to provide access for the disabled.
Build out: If the tenant is responsible for the build-out, some leases may include a clause that the tenant is responsible for having an ADA inspection completed to ensure that all the interior space such as counter heights, doors, accessible routes, and restrooms are in compliance.
Improvements: If the landlord is making improvements, warrant that the improvements will be paid for by the landlord and will fully comply with pertinent ADA requirements. Make certain the cost of bringing common areas (elevators, stairways, doors) into compliance is not passed along to the tenant as part of operating costs.
The landlord has no “grandfather” exemptions for the property’s ADA compliance. Likewise, a tenant cannot deem the property “grandfathered” and fail to provide accessible services and aids.
There may be a lease clause that states the tenant is responsible for having an ADA inspection completed to ensure that all the interior space such as counter heights, doors, accessible routes, and restrooms are in compliance.
ADA Accessibility Videos: Brief overview of parts of the ADA standard for common issues.