Companies Can Help Protect Themselves from Website Accessibility Lawsuits with a Letter of Reasonable Accessibility from BoIA
February 1, 2019 9:15:00 AM EST
Jan. 29, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Businesses that have a Letter of Reasonable Accessibility will be better-protected from accessibility lawsuits, according to the Bureau of Internet Accessibility (BoIA).
BoIA clients who have opted into ongoing support will receive a Letter of Reasonable Accessibility that helps prove their accessibility compliance. Clients’ attorneys can quickly refer to and share the letter to help defend against web accessibility lawsuits.
“Companies that prioritize creating accessible web experiences can rest a little easier now. A Letter of Reasonable Accessibility from our company may be the fastest way to fend off lawsuits by proving and outlining their reasonable efforts to achieve full digital accessibility,” said Mark Shapiro, President of the Bureau of Internet Accessibility.
The Rhode Island-based digital accessibility company says the letter will detail exactly why BoIA supports the claim that the website is reasonably accessible and that appropriate accommodations have been made for people with disabilities. Companies will receive a Letter of Reasonable Accessibility after BoIA has performed a full accessibility audit and specific remediation recommendations have been implemented.
Letters will be updated quarterly so that organizations and their attorneys always have current information available.
“For businesses hoping to defeat website accessibility claims, a Letter of Reasonable Accessibility could be a key piece of evidence in demonstrating that a company has met its compliance obligations. At a minimum, it should be used to demonstrate a business’s commitment to accessibility and that the threatened lawsuit is not a catalyst for the company’s remediation efforts – potentially saving that company substantial sums in subsequent litigation,” said attorney Christian Antkowiak, a Shareholder with Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney PC.
Every Letter of Reasonable Accessibility will be fully-customized to the client and will identify the organization’s target level of accessibility and the web standards used for accessibility testing.
The letters will also include: BoIA’s testing methodology and an explanation of how BoIA has tested the properties for the experiences and challenges of different disabilities; BoIA’s manual and automated Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 audit process; plans for addressing any known accessibility issues; information about third-party site integrations; details about staff training; and descriptions of the website’s accessibility accommodations.
“Achieving digital compliance through accessibility puts companies on the right side of the law,” said Shapiro. “But, in today’s legal climate, that’s only half the battle — they also need to be able to prove their compliance if a complaint or lawsuit is brought against them.”