January 2024 Lawsuits Filed
January 2024 Defendants
with a previous ADA digital lawsuit
January 2024 Defendants
sued while using a 3rd party accessibility related control (widget)
These include any claims made against a website, mobile app, or video content filed in federal court under the ADA or the Unruh Civil Rights Act in California.
In 2022, Plaintiffs filed 8,694 Title III lawsuits in federal courts, according to data gathered by Seyfarth Shaw LLP. ADA-based lawsuits filed in federal court made up 37% of the 8,694 ADA Title III lawsuits in 2022, making 2022 a record-breaking year for ADA website lawsuits in federal court. When adding ADA-based lawsuits filed at the state level, the number of ADA digital lawsuits in 2022 totaled 4,061.
In 2023, plaintiff firms filed more than 4,500 ADA-related app and web accessibility lawsuits for an average of 80-100 lawsuits a week. Most lawsuits were filed in New York, California, or Florida with ecommerce websites receiving the bulk of claims. These instances included lawsuits filed in both federal and state courts (e.g., in California under the Unruh Act).
The industries most impacted by ADA-related lawsuits include:
ADA lawsuits are impacting organizations of all sizes, even small businesses. In 2022, more than a quarter of digital accessibility lawsuits were filed against companies with revenue over $50 million, which means that nearly 75% of lawsuits were filed against those with revenue under $50 million. More plaintiffs are suing smaller businesses, especially since the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic.
Seventy-five percent of all digital ADA lawsuits in 2022 were against e-commerce companies. Almost 20% of the top 500 e-Commerce websites received a lawsuit in 2022. Over the last five years, nearly 80% of the top 500 e-commerce websites received a lawsuit.
An accessibility widget is a tool created to allow website visitors to adjust certain aspects of a website, such as text size and background color. Widgets do not serve as a successful accessibility compliance strategy, as they aim to solve only a small portion of accessibility issues and cannot guarantee WCAG compliance. Businesses that solely rely on accessibility widgets to ensure compliance could be more at risk for ADA lawsuits. Almost 600 lawsuits were filed in 2022 against businesses that used accessibility widgets, and widgets were often cited as a barrier in the lawsuit.
To get started with website accessibility, test your site with UsableNet’s free AQA testing tool. Next, look at the current state of your digital properties. Inventory your website, app, PDFs, and all multimedia. The third step is to complete user testing with people with disabilities. From there, connect with your web team to remediate any accessibility issues. Lastly, you’ll want to create and publish an accessibility statement, along with adding accessibility and ADA compliance to your future web and app contracts.