Are Websites Covered Under Title III?

There is a great article here about ADA Compliance and Title III!
This is from

Photo of scales on and someone writing at a desk.


In 1991, the DOJ enacted regulations to implement Titles II and III of the ADA, which were revised in September 2010. To qualify as a public accommodation under DOJ Title III regulations, an entity must fall within at least one of twelve categories:

  1. Places of lodging (e.g., inns, hotels, motels) (except for owner-occupied establishments renting fewer than six rooms);
  2. Establishments serving food or drink (e.g., restaurants and bars);
  3. Places of exhibition or entertainment (e.g., motion picture houses, theaters, concert halls, stadiums);
  4. Places of public gathering (e.g., auditoriums, convention centers, lecture halls);
  5. Sales or rental establishments (e.g., bakeries, grocery stores, hardware stores, shopping centers);
  6. Service establishments (e.g., laundromats, dry cleaners, banks, barbershops, beauty shops, travel services, shoe repair services, funeral parlors, gas stations, offices of accountants or lawyers, pharmacies, insurance offices, professional offices of health care providers, hospitals);
  7. Public transportation terminals, depots, or stations (not including facilities relating to air transportation);
  8. Places of public display or collection (e.g., museums, libraries, galleries);
  9. Places of recreation (e.g., parks, zoos, amusement parks);
  10. Places of education (e.g., nursery schools, elementary, secondary, undergraduate, or postgraduate private schools);
  11. Social service center establishments (e.g., day care centers, senior citizen centers, homeless shelters, food banks, adoption agencies); and
  12. Places of exercise or recreation (e.g., gymnasiums, health spas, bowling alleys, golf courses).

The ADA was enacted prior to widespread use of the internet by individuals and businesses. Therefore, Title III and DOJ regulations do not specifically address the internet or provide guidelines for website compliance.

On September 25, 2018, Assistant Attorney General Stephen E. Boyd responded to the June 20 letter confirming DOJ’s earlier position that the ADA applies to the websites of public accommodations. He stated that the DOJ’s “interpretation is consistent with the ADA’s Title III requirement that the goods, services, privileges, or activities provided by places of public accommodation be equally accessible to people with disabilities.” Boyd also stated that, “absent the adoption of specific technical requirements for websites through rulemaking, public accommodations have flexibility in how to comply with the ADA’s general requirements of nondiscrimination and effective communication” and that “noncompliance with a voluntary technical standard for website accessibility does not necessarily indicate noncompliance with the ADA.


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