Preventing frivolous lawsuits is mainly about both doing the obvious things to protect from unnecessary legal action and mitigating potential nuisance actions. While it’s very possible to do everything right and still be sued for a perceived slight or even a misinterpretation of the law, it’s still necessary to proceed on the side of right.
Here are 4 tips for avoiding frivolous lawsuits by ensuring websites are accessible for everyone.
Provide Website Access to All
Whether looking at the ADA law supporting people with disabilities to ensure they have access to services, facilities, and the web, or at the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), disabled people need to be able to do what others can already do. And that includes the web. Websites specifically should provide for people who have a disability that gets in the way of their using the site. This can be due to a garish color scheme that prevents them from reading the text clearly, or a confusing navigational setup that a screen reader software package cannot access.
Don’t Let Anyone Feel Left Out or Disgruntled
What’s needed for people with disabilities is different from others. Therefore, it’s helpful to make changes to a site to enhance it. Videos that include a voiceover or an encoded subtitle track explain what’s in the video for people who cannot see it. Diagrams and infographics can include alt tags explaining what someone cannot see.
Providing additional information to fill in the gaps helps disabled people to not feel left out. They can also gain full use of the site in the same way that anyone else can. Not only does this assist them, but it shows that the site owners have made an intentional effort to do so.
Include Extra Website Features for the Disabled
Adding special features for people with disabilities won’t affect others, but it can be immensely useful to those that need it. For example, the screen reader that’s built into accessiBe lets visitors hear what’s on the site. It can help them to move through navigational elements, access buttons, and complete web forms to submit information correctly too.
Doing more like this for people that struggle to use the web avoids anyone feeling that they’re being insulted. Frivolous lawsuits are often brought by people who feel slighted. They don’t always possess the right perspective to see that that’s not true. These types of legal problems become expensive to handle.
Being Responsive to Requests by the Disabled Community
People get things wrong. Because companies are made up of people, it stands to reason that mistakes happen, even unintentional ones. Being receptive and welcoming feedback from disability groups is useful for everyone. It can serve to highlight site problems that the company was unaware of. It could be that their latest blog post was published by a freelancer who didn’t think to add alt tags and write descriptions about the uploaded photos they selected for publication. Picking up on that and making fast work of fixing highlighted concerns goes a long way toward embracing communities filled with good people who have additional life struggles.
Companies that go the extra mile on their behalf are respected over those that only do just enough. Making the extra effort is not simply good for customers, but it also avoids potential lawsuits.