ADA Lawsuits for Lack of Braille on Gift Cards

Over the past few weeks, visually impaired plaintiffs have filed hundreds of lawsuits in the New York federal courts against restaurants and retailers alleging violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) because their gift cards are not available in braille.

Braille ADA 280x210Plaintiff attorneys allege that the failure to provide Braille on gift cards denies the visually impaired from equal access to the products and services offered by the places of accommodation. So far, the gift cards have been private label (closed-loop) gift cards.

CUNA Mutual Group has issued a Risk Alert to make credit unions aware of the issue. CUNA Mutual Group is not aware of any credit unions that have received a demand letter threatening a lawsuit but will continue to monitor these lawsuits and provide updates if warranted.

Similar to the website accessibility lawsuits credit unions have been hit with, the new lawsuits appear to be filed by a handful of serial plaintiffs often represented by the same small group of law firms. Given the popularity of gift cards the lawsuits will likely expand to other states.