“Help the disabled by fixing ADA scams”

The Sacramento Bee editorializes against the state’s well-established ADA racket, which has been going for many years now and is not being cleaned up through legislative reform because too many people find financial or ideological advantage in keeping things the way they are:

California law puts a $4,000 fine on each violation and directed the proceeds to “aggrieved” parties, even if they weren’t harmed or inconvenienced by the violation. A business could be sued for faded paint on an open handicapped parking spot, a ramp 2 degrees too steep, incorrect wording on a sign. A practiced eye can spot half a dozen violations most anywhere, and that’s a $24,000 jackpot for a scammer. …

ADA rules change constantly. Two years ago, signs next to handicapped parking spaces had to read “No parking.” Now, signs must warn that the fine is $250. That’s not a barrier to a disabled person, but still could be treated like one when it comes to fines. That’s ridiculous. If a business owner hasn’t put up a new sign, he should be given an opportunity to fix it before having to pay some lawyer $4,000.


  • At first glace “a ramp 2 degrees too steep” doesn’t sound like a big deal; however, once you realize the maximum allowed slope for a ramp is 1:12 or 4.76 degrees – adding an additional 2 degrees is significant! At that slope, it would make the ramp unusable and dangerous.

  • That depends on how you define “unusable and dangerous”. If you mean “someone can’t get up it” that’s a problem. If you mean “not in compliance with the spec but not so much so as to prevent people getting up it”, that’s not a problem.