Can my website be considered “a place of public accommodation”?

Photo by Olga Lioncat

A place of public accommodation means any place that is open to the public where commerce is carried out.

Commerce happens when things are bought or sold, or when services are bought or sold. Some example include banks, restaurants, theaters, hotels, and websites.

If you’re asking because you’re unsure of whether or not your site needs to be ADA compliant, the short answer is yes (keep reading if you want to know more and to see who I trust / use).

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires that all these places (websites included) be accessible to people with disabilities, and several lawsuits have been filed against website owners for failing to make their sites accessible.

There have been numerous lawsuits filed against website owners for violating the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by not providing equal access to individuals with disabilities. Some high-profile cases include:

Domino’s Pizza LLC v. Robles
The U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear an appeal by Domino’s Pizza to dismiss a lawsuit alleging that the company’s website and app were not accessible to individuals with visual impairments, violating the ADA.

National Federation of the Blind v. Target Corporation
Target was sued for not having an accessible website, which resulted in a settlement requiring the company to pay $6 million in damages and make their website accessible.

Winn-Dixie Stores, Inc. v. Gil
Winn-Dixie was sued for not having an accessible website, and the court found that the website was not accessible, violating the ADA. The court ordered Winn-Dixie to make its website accessible and pay the plaintiff’s attorney’s fees.

Blick Art Materials, LLC v. Patel
A federal appeals court ruled that Blick Art Materials violated the ADA by not having an accessible website, affirming a lower court’s ruling that the plaintiff had standing to sue.

These are just a few examples, and there have been many more lawsuits filed against website owners for failing to make their sites accessible.


Bottom line, it’s important for website owners to make their sites are accessible to individuals with disabilities to avoid legal issues and ensure equal access for all users.

The service I use for my this website is accessiBe (you can easily customize it so it matches your website’s look and feel and it’s the most affordable protection you can get).

If you need me to analyze your website for you and install the accessibility code for you, contact me.