Application Of The ADA And Employment Law The Situation Sally calls sounding pretty upset. You ask her what happened, “Did you lose a ‘Soufflé’ today or so

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Application Of The ADA And Employment Law The Situation
Sally calls sounding pretty upset. You ask her what happened, “Did you lose a ‘Soufflé’ today or something?” Not laughing, she starts to tell you she read that a disabled person was discriminated against by a franchise business because the company’s official website does not have an accessibility policy.
A disabled person sued based on the denial of access to the company’s website and won! You state, “I guess that’s possible, denial of accessibility is an established legal ground to sue under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). But, how in the world could a webpage not be accessible to a disabled person? Or, for that matter, how would it be accessible? How does that happen?” Sally replies, “I forgot one thing; the person suing was blind!”  “It still doesn’t make sense to me,” you state.

Your Assignment
View these two documents (Which are listed in the attachments section):
· Avoiding Pitfalls in Online Sales to Consumers (PDF)  
· Dunkin Donuts Website Violates the Americans with Disabilities Act (PDF).
Your Response
You and Sally must investigate the Dunkin’ Donuts® case because the company intends to integrate its webpage into the core of the business. You need to get ahead of this issue.

Using the Dunkin’ Donuts case, list the basis of the violation of the ADA.
Analyze the facts and issues using the IRAC format. A guide of the IRAC format is listed in the attachments section
Compare the applicability of the ADA to your device.
Do not forget to note the steps you must implement to guarantee that your website is compliant with the American with Disabilities Act.
Use information from other prior case study when analysis the Dunkin Donuts case study. Also use in text citations and APA format. Massie, Raymond 6/7/2019
For Educational Use Only

Dunkin’ Donuts Website Violates the ADA: Eleventh Circuit, Practical Law Legal Update…

© 2019 Thomson Reuters. No claim to original U.S. Government Works. 1

Dunkin’ Donuts Website Violates the ADA: Eleventh
Circuit

by Practical Law Commercial Transactions

Law stated as of 06 Aug 2018 • USA (National/Federal)

On July 31, 2018, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit reversed and remanded the district court’s
dismissal of Dennis Haynes v. Dunkin’ Donuts LLC. The Eleventh Circuit held that Dunkin’ Donuts’ website violated Title III of
the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) because it assisted in the use of Dunkin’ Donuts stores yet was inaccessible to the
blind.

On July 31, 2018, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit (Eleventh Circuit) held in Dennis Haynes v.
Dunkin’ Donuts LLC that Dunkin’ Donuts violated the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) (42 U.S.C. §12188) because its
website “facilitates the use of Dunkin’ Donuts shops, which are places of public accommodation,” but was not accessible to the
blind (2018 WL 3634720).

Background

Dennis Haynes, who is blind, sued Dunkin’ Donuts for violating Title III of the ADA because its website was not compatible
with screen reading software for the blind. Haynes sought declaratory and injunctive relief under the ADA, as well as attorney’s
fees.

The district court dismissed Haynes’ complaint for not stating a plausible claim for relief under Title III of the ADA, stating that
the plaintiff failed to allege a connection between the barriers he faced when accessing the Dunkin’ Donuts website and his
inability to access Dunkin’ Donuts products and services at its stores. Haynes appealed to the Eleventh Circuit.

Analysis

Haynes argued that the Dunkin’ Donuts website should be accessible to the blind under the ADA because:

• Dunkin’ Donuts stores are a place of a public accommodation.

• The Dunkin’ Donuts website is a “service, facility, privilege, advantage, benefit and accommodation” of the Dunkin’
Donuts stores.

Dunkin’ Donuts argued that Haynes failed to state a claim because:

http://www.westlaw.com/Link/Document/FullText?findType=L&pubNum=1000546&cite=42USCAS12188&originatingDoc=If3c9abaf969611e8a5b3e3d9e23d7429&refType=LQ&originationContext=document&vr=3.0&rs=cblt1.0&transitionType=PLDocumentLink&billingHash=1C770408CF878FD370896823D2A6D3FAC614CCDCDDA3894D8A8F2C767E68F106&contextData=(sc.Search)

http://www.westlaw.com/Link/Document/FullText?findType=Y&serNum=2045159719&pubNum=0000999&originatingDoc=If3c9abaf969611e8a5b3e3d9e23d7429&refType=RP&originationContext=document&vr=3.0&rs=cblt1.0&transitionType=PLDocumentLink&billingHash=AE10806BF553C95D4AD43533F92FE23E4E45FBB1E20EE22D2935FD17EFC2E6BE&contextData=(sc.Search)

Massie, Raymond 6/7/2019
For Educational Use Only

Dunkin’ Donuts Website Violates the ADA: Eleventh Circuit, Practical Law Legal Update…

© 2019 Thomson Reuters. No claim to original U.S. Government Works. 2

• Although its shops are a place of public accommodation, its website is not.

• Its website is not “a good, service, facility, privilege, or advantage of its shops.”

The Eleventh Circuit held in favor of Haynes.

The court stated that the ADA prohibits discrimination against the disabled by preventing their full enjoyment of goods,
services, facilities, privileges, or accommodations at places of public accommodation. In addition, the prohibition under the
ADA includes tangible and intangible barriers that disabled people face. Here, the website facilitates the use of Dunkin’ Donuts
stores, which are places of public accommodation. Moreover, the website denies Haynes access to the services of the Dunkin’
Donuts stores that are available on the Dunkin’ Donuts website, which includes information about the stores’ products, store
location information, and the ability to purchase gift cards online. Failure to make those services available to the blind violates
the ADA.

The court reversed the district court’s dismissal and remanded for further proceedings.

Implications

This decision expands the reach of the ADA to websites that primarily provide information about a business’ physical location
and the goods and services sold at a business’ physical location. This decision may open the door to an increasing number of
lawsuits over website accessibility under the ADA against businesses that are defined as places of public accommodation.
Businesses should review their websites to ensure they comply with the ADA.

For more information about website compliance under the ADA, see Legal Update, Is Your Website ADA Compliant? and
Practice Note, Avoiding Pitfalls in Online Sales to Consumers: Americans with Disabilities Act

http://www.westlaw.com/Document/I79e823d54a3811e89bf199c0ee06c731/View/FullText.html?originationContext=document&vr=3.0&rs=cblt1.0&transitionType=DocumentItem&contextData=(sc.Search)

http://www.westlaw.com/Document/I92c0dec272d611e79bef99c0ee06c731/View/FullText.html?originationContext=document&vr=3.0&rs=cblt1.0&transitionType=DocumentItem&contextData=(sc.Search)#co_anchor_a000025

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