Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) lawsuits under Title III are often filed against businesses and landlords. They can be defended, however, if the plaintiff who filed the lawsuit lacks standing in court. This is more common than it might sound.
In law, standing is a requirement for the party seeking a legal remedy. That party must show that they have sufficient connection to the alleged violation and have, or will have, harm from it. Standing is what prevents someone from bringing a lawsuit over something that doesn’t affect them, or on behalf of someone they have no real connection to. A plaintiff must have a real stake in the outcome of the litigation.
If an ADA plaintiff does not have a bona fide intent to do business with the defendant, then there is no standing because there is no harm to the plaintiff. Someone with a disability cannot just sue a business that he/she has no actual intent to ever do business with. There would be no harm for the court to remedy, and standing would not exist. The same principle applies to accessibility claims under California’s Unruh Civil Rights Act. Continue ›