Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)


Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability by private entities in places of public accommodation and requires that all new places of public accommodation and commercial facilities be designed and constructed so as to be readily accessible and useable by persons with disabilities.

Removal of Barriers

The act requires the removal of architectural barriers that are structural in nature in existing facilities where such removal is readily achievable, i.e., easily accomplishable and able to be carried out without much difficulty or expense. Public accommodation should take measures to provide access to restroom facilities. These measures include, for example, removal of obstructing furniture or vending machines, widening of doors, installation of ramps, providing accessible signage, widening of toilet stalls, and installation of grab bars.

Exclusions under these provisions are any private clubs or religious entities.

Tax Credits

The Internal Revenue Code, as amended in 1990, allows a deduction of up to $15,000.00 per year for expenses associated with the removal of qualified architectural barriers. The amendment also permits eligible small businesses to receive a tax credit for certain costs of compliance with the ADA.

New Construction and Alterations

The act does not require new construction or alterations. It simply requires that when a public accommodation undertakes the construction and alteration of a facility, the new construction or altered facility must be made accessible to the ADA guidelines.

Civil Actions
Civil actions that are filed against offenders will be as follows:

  • Not exceeding $50,000.00 for a first violation.
  • Not exceeding $100,000.00 for any subsequent violation.

Toilet Stalls

If toilet stalls are provided, then at least one shall be a standard toilet stall complying with figure 30 a. This stall is required in all new construction, as well as public accommodations that are being altered through the removing of barriers as discussed above. In alterations, however, where the standard stall is technically infeasible or where local plumbing codes prohibit reduction in the number of fixtures, then the 36in. or 48in. stalls, figure 30 b, are permitted. In large toilet rooms where six or more toilet stalls are provided, it is required that a 36in. wide stall with parallel grab bars be provided in addition to the standard stall required in new construction. Since this stall is primarily intended for use by persons using canes, crutches, and walkers, rather than wheelchairs, the length of the stall may be conventional. The door, however, must swing out.

The width of the standard stall must be 60in. minimum clear inside, with a depth of 56in. minimum inside with a wall mounted water closet, and 59in. minimum with a floor mounted water closet. The commode must be centered 18in. from either side of the stall, with a 32in. minimum clear opening. To achieve this, we recommend a 34in. outswinging door. The location of the door is most critical in providing an accessible stall. The door is to be mounted no more than 4in. from the side wall or panel that is opposite diagonally from the commode. This allows maximum clearance for the wheelchair to enter and maneuver about. end of row) The standard alcove stall end of row) compartment again must be 60in. wide minimum clear opening, with a 32in. minimum clearance on the door, and again, we recommend a 34in. door to achieve this. The length of the stall is to be 92in. with a wall mounted water closet, or 95in. with a floor mounted water closet. The commode is to be mounted 18in. to the center from the back wall.

The alternate stalls are used in alterations where the standard stall is technically infeasible or where local plumbing codes prohibit reduction in the number of fixtures.

Door Latches
The Act requires latches that do not require tight grasping, tight pinching, or twisting of the wrist to operate.

Grab Bars
Grab bars complying with the length and positioning shall be provided.

Urinal Screens
Urinal screens that do not extend beyond the front edge of the urinal rim may be provided with 29in. clearance between them. We will begin to stock a small quantity of 12in. X 42in. wall hung urinal screens in compliance with this requirement.

Showers Accessible
Shower stalls shall comply with 4.21. Transfer type shower stalls are the most popular individual shower stalls used for people with disabilities. Stalls shall be 36in. X 36in. clear inside dimension, with minimum clear floor space of 36in. wide X 48in. long, from the control wall, to allow adequate space to transfer from the wheelchair to the shower compartment.