Some of the same lawyers that filed numerous class action lawsuits against credit unions and banks for owning or operating ATMs in alleged violation of the fee disclosure requirements in the Electronic Fund Transfer Act (EFTA) are now turning their attention to compliance by ATM owners and operators with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
A new class action complaint was filed against BB&T last week in federal court in Atlanta alleging that two of that bank’s ATMs did not meet the accessibility features that are mandated by the ADA. The case, Thomas v. Branch Banking and Trust Company, No. 1:13-cv-00656 (M.D. Ga.), alleges that a blind individual that was denied access to two ATMs because the ATMs had no voice-guidance feature, no Braille instructions for initiating speech mode, and the function keys did not have the required tactile symbols. The lawsuit seeks an injunction and payment of costs and attorneys’ fees.
If this case represents the start of a trend similar to the EFTA class actions filed in the past year, we can expect similar lawsuits to continue as attorneys seek out other ADA violators. If you have not checked your ATM for ADA compliance recently, now is the time to do so.