Billing Code: 4410-13

Part 36 Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability in Public Accommodations and Commercial Facilities (as amended by the final rule published on September 15, 2010)

Authority:

5 U.S.C. 301; 28 U.S.C. 509, 510; 42 U.S.C. 12186(b).

Subpart A – General

§ 36.101 Purpose.

The purpose of this part is to implement title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 12181), which prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability by public accommodations and requires places of public accommodation and commercial facilities to be designed, constructed, and altered in compliance with the accessibility standards established by this part.

§ 36.102 Application.

  • (a) General. This part applies to any –
    • (1) Public accommodation;
    • (2) Commercial facility; or
    • (3) Private entity that offers examinations or courses related to applications, licensing, certification, or credentialing for secondary or postsecondary education, professional, or trade purposes.
  • (b) Public accommodations.
    • (1) The requirements of this part applicable to public accommodations are set forth in subparts B, C, and D of this part.
    • (2) The requirements of subparts B and C of this part obligate a public accommodation only with respect to the operations of a place of public accommodation.
    • (3) The requirements of subpart D of this part obligate a public accommodation only with respect to –
      • (i) A facility used as, or designed or constructed for use as, a place of public accommodation; or
      • (ii) A facility used as, or designed and constructed for use as, a commercial facility.
  • (c) Commercial facilities. The requirements of this part applicable to commercial facilities are set forth in subpart D of this part.
  • (d) Examinations and courses. The requirements of this part applicable to private entities that offer examinations or courses as specified in paragraph (a) of this section are set forth in § 36.309.
  • (e) Exemptions and exclusions. This part does not apply to any private club (except to the extent that the facilities of the private club are made available to customers or patrons of a place of public accommodation), or to any religious entity or public entity.

§ 36.103 Relationship to other laws.

  • (a) Rule of interpretation. Except as otherwise provided in this part, this part shall not be construed to apply a lesser standard than the standards applied under title V of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. 791) or the regulations issued by Federal agencies pursuant to that title.
  • (b) Section 504. This part does not affect the obligations of a recipient of Federal financial assistance to comply with the requirements of section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. 794) and regulations issued by Federal agencies implementing section 504.
  • (c) Other laws. This part does not invalidate or limit the remedies, rights, and procedures of any other Federal laws, or State or local laws (including State common law) that provide greater or equal protection for the rights of individuals with disabilities or individuals associated with them.

§ 36.104 Definitions.

For purposes of this part, the term–

1991 Standards means requirements set forth in the ADA Standards for Accessible Design, originally published on July 26, 1991, and republished as Appendix D to this part.

2004 ADAAG means the requirements set forth in appendices B and D to 36 CFR part 1191 (2009).

2010 Standards means the 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design, which consist of the 2004 ADAAG and the requirements contained in subpart D of this part.

Act means the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (Pub. L. 101 - 336, 104 Stat. 327, 42 U.S.C. 12101 - 12213 and 47 U.S.C. 225 and 611).

Commerce means travel, trade, traffic, commerce, transportation, or communication –

  • (1) Among the several States;
  • (2) Between any foreign country or any territory or possession and any State; or
  • (3) Between points in the same State but through another State or foreign country.

Commercial facilities means facilities –

  • (1) Whose operations will affect commerce;
  • (2) That are intended for nonresidential use by a private entity; and
  • (3) That are not –
    • (i) Facilities that are covered or expressly exempted from coverage under the Fair Housing Act of 1968, as amended (42 U.S.C. 3601 - 3631);
    • (ii) Aircraft; or
    • (iii) Railroad locomotives, railroad freight cars, railroad cabooses, commuter or intercity passenger rail cars (including coaches, dining cars, sleeping cars, lounge cars, and food service cars), any other railroad cars described in section 242 of the Act or covered under title II of the Act, or railroad rights-of-way. For purposes of this definition, "rail" and "railroad" have the meaning given the term "railroad" in section 202(e) of the Federal Railroad Safety Act of 1970 (45 U.S.C. 431(e)).

Current illegal use of drugs means illegal use of drugs that occurred recently enough to justify a reasonable belief that a person´s drug use is current or that continuing use is a real and ongoing problem.

Direct threat means a significant risk to the health or safety of others that cannot be eliminated by a modification of policies, practices, or procedures, or by the provision of auxiliary aids or services, as provided in § 36.208.

Disability means, with respect to an individual, a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more of the major life activities of such individual; a record of such an impairment; or being regarded as having such an impairment.

  • (1) The phrase physical or mental impairment means –
    • (i) Any physiological disorder or condition, cosmetic disfigurement, or anatomical loss affecting one or more of the following body systems: neurological; musculoskeletal; special sense organs; respiratory, including speech organs; cardiovascular; reproductive; digestive; genitourinary; hemic and lymphatic; skin; and endocrine;
    • (ii) Any mental or psychological disorder such as mental retardation, organic brain syndrome, emotional or mental illness, and specific learning disabilities;
    • (iii) The phrase physical or mental impairment includes, but is not limited to, such contagious and noncontagious diseases and conditions as orthopedic, visual, speech, and hearing impairments, cerebral palsy, epilepsy, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, cancer, heart disease, diabetes, mental retardation, emotional illness, specific learning disabilities, HIV disease (whether symptomatic or asymptomatic), tuberculosis, drug addiction, and alcoholism;
    • (iv) The phrase physical or mental impairment does not include homosexuality or bisexuality.
  • (2) The phrase major life activities means functions such as caring for one´s self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, and working.
  • (3) The phrase has a record of such an impairment means has a history of, or has been misclassified as having, a mental or physical impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.
  • (4) The phrase is regarded as having an impairment means –
    • (i) Has a physical or mental impairment that does not substantially limit major life activities but that is treated by a private entity as constituting such a limitation;
    • (ii) Has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits major life activities only as a result of the attitudes of others toward such impairment; or
    • (iii) Has none of the impairments defined in paragraph (1) of this definition but is treated by a private entity as having such an impairment.
  • (5) The term disability does not include –
    • (i) Transvestism, transsexualism, pedophilia, exhibitionism, voyeurism, gender identity disorders not resulting from physical impairments, or other sexual behavior disorders;
    • (ii) Compulsive gambling, kleptomania, or pyromania; or
    • (iii) Psychoactive substance use disorders resulting from current illegal use of drugs.

Drug means a controlled substance, as defined in schedules I through V of section 202 of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 812).

Existing facility means a facility in existence on any given date, without regard to whether the facility may also be considered newly constructed or altered under this part.

Facility means all or any portion of buildings, structures, sites, complexes, equipment, rolling stock or other conveyances, roads, walks, passageways, parking lots, or other real or personal property, including the site where the building, property, structure, or equipment is located.

Housing at a place of education means housing operated by or on behalf of an elementary, secondary, undergraduate, or postgraduate school, or other place of education, including dormitories, suites, apartments, or other places of residence.

Illegal use of drugs means the use of one or more drugs, the possession or distribution of which is unlawful under the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 812). The term "illegal use of drugs" does not include the use of a drug taken under supervision by a licensed health care professional, or other uses authorized by the Controlled Substances Act or other provisions of Federal law.

Individual with a disability means a person who has a disability. The term "individual with a disability" does not include an individual who is currently engaging in the illegal use of drugs, when the private entity acts on the basis of such use.

Other power-driven mobility device means any mobility device powered by batteries, fuel, or other engines – whether or not designed primarily for use by individuals with mobility disabilities – that is used by individuals with mobility disabilities for the purpose of locomotion, including golf cars, electronic personal assistance mobility devices (EPAMDs), such as the Segway® PT, or any mobility device designed to operate in areas without defined pedestrian routes, but that is not a wheelchair within the meaning of this section. This definition does not apply to Federal wilderness areas; wheelchairs in such areas are defined in section 508(c)(2) of the ADA, 42 U.S.C. 12207(c)(2).

Place of public accommodation means a facility operated by a private entity whose operations affect commerce and fall within at least one of the following categories –

  • (1) Place of lodging, except for an establishment located within a facility that contains not more than five rooms for rent or hire and that actually is occupied by the proprietor of the establishment as the residence of the proprietor. For purposes of this part, a facility is a "place of lodging" if it is –
    • (i) An inn, hotel, or motel; or
    • (ii) A facility that –
      • (A) Provides guest rooms for sleeping for stays that primarily are short-term in nature (generally 30 days or less) where the occupant does not have the right to return to a specific room or unit after the conclusion of his or her stay; and
      • (B) Provides guest rooms under conditions and with amenities similar to a hotel, motel, or inn, including the following –
        • (1) On- or off-site management and reservations service;
        • (2) Rooms available on a walk-up or call-in basis;
        • (3) Availability of housekeeping or linen service; and
        • (4) Acceptance of reservations for a guest room type without guaranteeing a particular unit or room until check-in, and without a prior lease or security deposit.
  • (2) A restaurant, bar, or other establishment serving food or drink;
  • (3) A motion picture house, theater, concert hall, stadium, or other place of exhibition or entertainment;
  • (4) An auditorium, convention center, lecture hall, or other place of public gathering;
  • (5) A bakery, grocery store, clothing store, hardware store, shopping center, or other sales or rental establishment;
  • (6) A laundromat, dry-cleaner, bank, barber shop, beauty shop, travel service, shoe repair service, funeral parlor, gas station, office of an accountant or lawyer, pharmacy, insurance office, professional office of a health care provider, hospital, or other service establishment;
  • (7) A terminal, depot, or other station used for specified public transportation;
  • (8) A museum, library, gallery, or other place of public display or collection;
  • (9) A park, zoo, amusement park, or other place of recreation;
  • (10) A nursery, elementary, secondary, undergraduate, or postgraduate private school, or other place of education;
  • (11) A day care center, senior citizen center, homeless shelter, food bank, adoption agency, or other social service center establishment; and
  • (12) A gymnasium, health spa, bowling alley, golf course, or other place of exercise or recreation.

Private club means a private club or establishment exempted from coverage under title II of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000a(e)).

Private entity means a person or entity other than a public entity.

Public accommodation means a private entity that owns, leases (or leases to), or operates a place of public accommodation.

Public entity means –

  • (1) Any State or local government;
  • (2) Any department, agency, special purpose district, or other instrumentality of a State or States or local government; and
  • (3) The National Railroad Passenger Corporation, and any commuter authority (as defined in section 103(8) of the Rail Passenger Service Act). (45 U.S.C. 541)

Qualified interpreter means an interpreter who, via a video remote interpreting (VRI) service or an on-site appearance, is able to interpret effectively, accurately, and impartially, both receptively and expressively, using any necessary specialized vocabulary. Qualified interpreters include, for example, sign language interpreters, oral transliterators, and cued-language transliterators.

Qualified reader means a person who is able to read effectively, accurately, and impartially using any necessary specialized vocabulary.

Readily achievable means easily accomplishable and able to be carried out without much difficulty or expense. In determining whether an action is readily achievable factors to be considered include –

  • (1) The nature and cost of the action needed under this part;
  • (2) The overall financial resources of the site or sites involved in the action; the number of persons employed at the site; the effect on expenses and resources; legitimate safety requirements that are necessary for safe operation, including crime prevention measures; or the impact otherwise of the action upon the operation of the site;
  • (3) The geographic separateness, and the administrative or fiscal relationship of the site or sites in question to any parent corporation or entity;
  • (4) If applicable, the overall financial resources of any parent corporation or entity; the overall size of the parent corporation or entity with respect to the number of its employees; the number, type, and location of its facilities; and
  • (5) If applicable, the type of operation or operations of any parent corporation or entity, including the composition, structure, and functions of the workforce of the parent corporation or entity.

Religious entity means a religious organization, including a place of worship.

Service animal means any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability, including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual, or other mental disability. Other species of animals, whether wild or domestic, trained or untrained, are not service animals for the purposes of this definition. The work or tasks performed by a service animal must be directly related to the handler´s disability. Examples of work or tasks include, but are not limited to, assisting individuals who are blind or have low vision with navigation and other tasks, alerting individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing to the presence of people or sounds, providing non-violent protection or rescue work, pulling a wheelchair, assisting an individual during a seizure, alerting individuals to the presence of allergens, retrieving items such as medicine or the telephone, providing physical support and assistance with balance and stability to individuals with mobility disabilities, and helping persons with psychiatric and neurological disabilities by preventing or interrupting impulsive or destructive behaviors. The crime deterrent effects of an animal´s presence and the provision of emotional support, well-being, comfort, or companionship do not constitute work or tasks for the purposes of this definition.

Specified public transportation means transportation by bus, rail, or any other conveyance (other than by aircraft) that provides the general public with general or special service (including charter service) on a regular and continuing basis.

State means each of the several States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the Virgin Islands, the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.

Undue burden means significant difficulty or expense. In determining whether an action would result in an undue burden, factors to be considered include –

  • (1) The nature and cost of the action needed under this part;
  • (2) The overall financial resources of the site or sites involved in the action; the number of persons employed at the site; the effect on expenses and resources; legitimate safety requirements that are necessary for safe operation, including crime prevention measures; or the impact otherwise of the action upon the operation of the site;
  • (3) The geographic separateness, and the administrative or fiscal relationship of the site or sites in question to any parent corporation or entity;
  • (4) If applicable, the overall financial resources of any parent corporation or entity; the overall size of the parent corporation or entity with respect to the number of its employees; the number, type, and location of its facilities; and
  • (5) If applicable, the type of operation or operations of any parent corporation or entity, including the composition, structure, and functions of the workforce of the parent corporation or entity.

Video remote interpreting (VRI) service means an interpreting service that uses video conference technology over dedicated lines or wireless technology offering high-speed, wide-bandwidth video connection that delivers high-quality video images as provided in § 36.303(f).

Wheelchair means a manually-operated or power-driven device designed primarily for use by an individual with a mobility disability for the main purpose of indoor or of both indoor and outdoor locomotion. This definition does not apply to Federal wilderness areas; wheelchairs in such areas are defined in section 508(c)(2) of the ADA, 42 U.S.C. 12207(c)(2).

§§ 36.105 – 36.199 [Reserved]

Subpart B – General Requirements

§ 36.201 General.

  • (a) Prohibition of discrimination. No individual shall be discriminated against on the basis of disability in the full and equal enjoyment of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations of any place of public accommodation by any private entity who owns, leases (or leases to), or operates a place of public accommodation.
  • (b) Landlord and tenant responsibilities. Both the landlord who owns the building that houses a place of public accommodation and the tenant who owns or operates the place of public accommodation are public accommodations subject to the requirements of this part. As between the parties, allocation of responsibility for complying with the obligations of this part may be determined by lease or other contract.

§ 36.202 Activities.

  • (a) Denial of participation. A public accommodation shall not subject an individual or class of individuals on the basis of a disability or disabilities of such individual or class, directly, or through contractual, licensing, or other arrangements, to a denial of the opportunity of the individual or class to participate in or benefit from the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations of a place of public accommodation.
  • (b) Participation in unequal benefit. A public accommodation shall not afford an individual or class of individuals, on the basis of a disability or disabilities of such individual or class, directly, or through contractual, licensing, or other arrangements, with the opportunity to participate in or benefit from a good, service, facility, privilege, advantage, or accommodation that is not equal to that afforded to other individuals.
  • (c) Separate benefit. A public accommodation shall not provide an individual or class of individuals, on the basis of a disability or disabilities of such individual or class, directly, or through contractual, licensing, or other arrangements with a good, service, facility, privilege, advantage, or accommodation that is different or separate from that provided to other individuals, unless such action is necessary to provide the individual or class of individuals with a good, service, facility, privilege, advantage, or accommodation, or other opportunity that is as effective as that provided to others.
  • (d) Individual or class of individuals. For purposes of paragraphs (a) through (c) of this section, the term "individual or class of individuals" refers to the clients or customers of the public accommodation that enters into the contractual, licensing, or other arrangement.

§ 36.203 Integrated settings.

  • (a) General. A public accommodation shall afford goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, and accommodations to an individual with a disability in the most integrated setting appropriate to the needs of the individual.
  • (b) Opportunity to participate. Notwithstanding the existence of separate or different programs or activities provided in accordance with this subpart, a public accommodation shall not deny an individual with a disability an opportunity to participate in such programs or activities that are not separate or different.
  • (c) Accommodations and services.
    • (1) Nothing in this part shall be construed to require an individual with a disability to accept an accommodation, aid, service, opportunity, or benefit available under this part that such individual chooses not to accept.
    • (2) Nothing in the Act or this part authorizes the representative or guardian of an individual with a disability to decline food, water, medical treatment, or medical services for that individual.

§ 36.204 Administrative methods.

A public accommodation shall not, directly or through contractual or other arrangements, utilize standards or criteria or methods of administration that have the effect of discriminating on the basis of disability, or that perpetuate the discrimination of others who are subject to common administrative control.

§ 36.205 Association.

A public accommodation shall not exclude or otherwise deny equal goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, accommodations, or other opportunities to an individual or entity because of the known disability of an individual with whom the individual or entity is known to have a relationship or association.

§ 36.206 Retaliation or coercion.

  • (a) No private or public entity shall discriminate against any individual because that individual has opposed any act or practice made unlawful by this part, or because that individual made a charge, testified, assisted, or participated in any manner in an investigation, proceeding, or hearing under the Act or this part.
  • (b) No private or public entity shall coerce, intimidate, threaten, or interfere with any individual in the exercise or enjoyment of, or on account of his or her having exercised or enjoyed, or on account of his or her having aided or encouraged any other individual in the exercise or enjoyment of, any right granted or protected by the Act or this part.
  • (c) Illustrations of conduct prohibited by this section include, but are not limited to:
    • (1) Coercing an individual to deny or limit the benefits, services, or advantages to which he or she is entitled under the Act or this part;
    • (2) Threatening, intimidating, or interfering with an individual with a disability who is seeking to obtain or use the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations of a public accommodation;
    • (3) Intimidating or threatening any person because that person is assisting or encouraging an individual or group entitled to claim the rights granted or protected by the Act or this part to exercise those rights; or
    • (4) Retaliating against any person because that person has participated in any investigation or action to enforce the Act or this part.

§ 36.207 Places of public accommodation located in private residences.

  • (a) When a place of public accommodation is located in a private residence, the portion of the residence used exclusively as a residence is not covered by this part, but that portion used exclusively in the operation of the place of public accommodation or that portion used both for the place of public accommodation and for residential purposes is covered by this part.
  • (b) The portion of the residence covered under paragraph (a) of this section extends to those elements used to enter the place of public accommodation, including the homeowner´s front sidewalk, if any, the door or entryway, and hallways; and those portions of the residence, interior or exterior, available to or used by customers or clients, including restrooms.

§ 36.208 Direct threat.

  • (a) This part does not require a public accommodation to permit an individual to participate in or benefit from the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages and accommodations of that public accommodation when that individual poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others.
  • (b) In determining whether an individual poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others, a public accommodation must make an individualized assessment, based on reasonable judgment that relies on current medical knowledge or on the best available objective evidence, to ascertain: The nature, duration, and severity of the risk; the probability that the potential injury will actually occur; and whether reasonable modifications of policies, practices, or procedures or the provision of auxiliary aids or services will mitigate the risk.

§ 36.209 Illegal use of drugs.

  • (a) General.
    • (1) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, this part does not prohibit discrimination against an individual based on that individual´s current illegal use of drugs.
    • (2) A public accommodation shall not discriminate on the basis of illegal use of drugs against an individual who is not engaging in current illegal use of drugs and who –
      • (i) Has successfully completed a supervised drug rehabilitation program or has otherwise been rehabilitated successfully;
      • (ii) Is participating in a supervised rehabilitation program; or
      • (iii) Is erroneously regarded as engaging in such use.
  • (b) Health and drug rehabilitation services.
    • (1) A public accommodation shall not deny health services, or services provided in connection with drug rehabilitation, to an individual on the basis of that individual´s current illegal use of drugs, if the individual is otherwise entitled to such services.
    • (2) A drug rehabilitation or treatment program may deny participation to individuals who engage in illegal use of drugs while they are in the program.
  • (c) Drug testing.
    • (1) This part does not prohibit a public accommodation from adopting or administering reasonable policies or procedures, including but not limited to drug testing, designed to ensure that an individual who formerly engaged in the illegal use of drugs is not now engaging in current illegal use of drugs.
    • (2) Nothing in this paragraph (c) shall be construed to encourage, prohibit, restrict, or authorize the conducting of testing for the illegal use of drugs.

§ 36.210 Smoking.

This part does not preclude the prohibition of, or the imposition of restrictions on, smoking in places of public accommodation.

§ 36.211 Maintenance of accessible features.

  • (a) A public accommodation shall maintain in operable working condition those features of facilities and equipment that are required to be readily accessible to and usable by persons with disabilities by the Act or this part.
  • (b) This section does not prohibit isolated or temporary interruptions in service or access due to maintenance or repairs.
  • (c) If the 2010 Standards reduce the technical requirements or the number of required accessible elements below the number required by the 1991 Standards, the technical requirements or the number of accessible elements in a facility subject to this part may be reduced in accordance with the requirements of the 2010 Standards.

§ 36.212 Insurance.

  • (a) This part shall not be construed to prohibit or restrict –
    • (1) An insurer, hospital or medical service company, health maintenance organization, or any agent, or entity that administers benefit plans, or similar organizations from underwriting risks, classifying risks, or administering such risks that are based on or not inconsistent with State law; or
    • (2) A person or organization covered by this part from establishing, sponsoring, observing or administering the terms of a bona fide benefit plan that are based on underwriting risks, classifying risks, or administering such risks that are based on or not inconsistent with State law; or
    • (3) A person or organization covered by this part from establishing, sponsoring, observing or administering the terms of a bona fide benefit plan that is not subject to State laws that regulate insurance.
  • (b) Paragraphs (a) (1), (2), and (3) of this section shall not be used as a subterfuge to evade the purposes of the Act or this part.
  • (c) A public accommodation shall not refuse to serve an individual with a disability because its insurance company conditions coverage or rates on the absence of individuals with disabilities.

§ 36.213 Relationship of subpart B to subparts C and D of this part.

Subpart B of this part sets forth the general principles of nondiscrimination applicable to all entities subject to this part. Subparts C and D of this part provide guidance on the application of the statute to specific situations. The specific provisions, including the limitations on those provisions, control over the general provisions in circumstances where both specific and general provisions apply.

§§ 36.214 – 36.299 [Reserved]

Subpart C – Specific Requirements

§ 36.301 Eligibility criteria.

  • (a) General. A public accommodation shall not impose or apply eligibility criteria that screen out or tend to screen out an individual with a disability or any class of individuals with disabilities from fully and equally enjoying any goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations, unless such criteria can be shown to be necessary for the provision of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations being offered.
  • (b) Safety. A public accommodation may impose legitimate safety requirements that are necessary for safe operation. Safety requirements must be based on actual risks and not on mere speculation, stereotypes, or generalizations about individuals with disabilities.
  • (c) Charges. A public accommodation may not impose a surcharge on a particular individual with a disability or any group of individuals with disabilities to cover the costs of measures, such as the provision of auxiliary aids, barrier removal, alternatives to barrier removal, and reasonable modifications in policies, practices, or procedures, that are required to provide that individual or group with the nondiscriminatory treatment required by the Act or this part.

§ 36.302 Modifications in policies, practices, or procedures.

  • (a) General. A public accommodation shall make reasonable modifications in policies, practices, or procedures, when the modifications are necessary to afford goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations to individuals with disabilities, unless the public accommodation can demonstrate that making the modifications would fundamentally alter the nature of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations.
  • (b) Specialties
    • (1) General. A public accommodation may refer an individual with a disability to another public accommodation, if that individual is seeking, or requires, treatment or services outside of the referring public accommodation´s area of specialization, and if, in the normal course of its operations, the referring public accommodation would make a similar referral for an individual without a disability who seeks or requires the same treatment or services.
    • (2) Illustrationmedical specialties. A health care provider may refer an individual with a disability to another provider, if that individual is seeking, or requires, treatment or services outside of the referring provider´s area of specialization, and if the referring provider would make a similar referral for an individual without a disability who seeks or requires the same treatment or services. A physician who specializes in treating only a particular condition cannot refuse to treat an individual with a disability for that condition, but is not required to treat the individual for a different condition.
  • (c) Service animals.
    • (1) General. Generally, a public accommodation shall modify policies, practices, or procedures to permit the use of a service animal by an individual with a disability.
    • (c)(2) Exceptions. A public accommodation may ask an individual with a disability to remove a service animal from the premises if:
      • (i) The animal is out of control and the animal´s handler does not take effective action to control it; or
      • (ii) The animal is not housebroken.
    • (3) If an animal is properly excluded. If a public accommodation properly excludes a service animal under § 36.302(c)(2), it shall give the individual with a disability the opportunity to obtain goods, services, and accommodations without having the service animal on the premises.
    • (4) Animal under handler´s control. A service animal shall be under the control of its handler. A service animal shall have a harness, leash, or other tether, unless either the handler is unable because of a disability to use a harness, leash, or other tether, or the use of a harness, leash, or other tether would interfere with the service animal´s safe, effective performance of work or tasks, in which case the service animal must be otherwise under the handler´s control (e.g., voice control, signals, or other effective means).
    • (5) Care or supervision. A public accommodation is not responsible for the care or supervision of a service animal.
    • (6) Inquiries. A public accommodation shall not ask about the nature or extent of a person´s disability, but may make two inquiries to determine whether an animal qualifies as a service animal. A public accommodation may ask if the animal is required because of a disability and what work or task the animal has been trained to perform. A public accommodation shall not require documentation, such as proof that the animal has been certified, trained, or licensed as a service animal. Generally, a public accommodation may not make these inquiries about a service animal when it is readily apparent that an animal is trained to do work or perform tasks for an individual with a disability (e.g., the dog is observed guiding an individual who is blind or has low vision, pulling a person´s wheelchair, or providing assistance with stability or balance to an individual with an observable mobility disability).
    • (7) Access to areas of a public accommodation. Individuals with disabilities shall be permitted to be accompanied by their service animals in all areas of a place of public accommodation where members of the public, program participants, clients, customers, patrons, or invitees, as relevant, are allowed to go.
    • (8) Surcharges. A public accommodation shall not ask or require an individual with a disability to pay a surcharge, even if people accompanied by pets are required to pay fees, or to comply with other requirements generally not applicable to people without pets. If a public accommodation normally charges individuals for the damage they cause, an individual with a disability may be charged for damage caused by his or her service animal.
    • (9) Miniature horses.
      • (i) A public accommodation shall make reasonable modifications in policies, practices, or procedures to permit the use of a miniature horse by an individual with a disability if the miniature horse has been individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of the individual with a disability.
      • (ii) Assessment factors. In determining whether reasonable modifications in policies, practices, or procedures can be made to allow a miniature horse into a specific facility, a public accommodation shall consider –
        • (A) The type, size, and weight of the miniature horse and whether the facility can accommodate these features;
        • (B) Whether the handler has sufficient control of the miniature horse;
        • (C) Whether the miniature horse is housebroken; and
        • (D) Whether the miniature horse´s presence in a specific facility compromises legitimate safety requirements that are necessary for safe operation.
      • (iii) Other requirements. Sections 36.302(c)(3) through (c)(8), which apply to service animals, shall also apply to miniature horses.
  • (d) Check-out aisles. A store with check-out aisles shall ensure that an adequate number of accessible check-out aisles are kept open during store hours, or shall otherwise modify its policies and practices, in order to ensure that an equivalent level of convenient service is provided to individuals with disabilities as is provided to others. If only one check-out aisle is accessible, and it is generally used for express service, one way of providing equivalent service is to allow persons with mobility impairments to make all their purchases at that aisle.
  • (e)
    • (1) Reservations made by places of lodging. A public accommodation that owns, leases (or leases to), or operates a place of lodging shall, with respect to reservations made by telephone, in-person, or through a third party –
      • (i) Modify its policies, practices, or procedures to ensure that individuals with disabilities can make reservations for accessible guest rooms during the same hours and in the same manner as individuals who do not need accessible rooms;
      • (ii) Identify and describe accessible features in the hotels and guest rooms offered through its reservations service in enough detail to reasonably permit individuals with disabilities to assess independently whether a given hotel or guest room meets his or her accessibility needs;
      • (iii) Ensure that accessible guest rooms are held for use by individuals with disabilities until all other guest rooms of that type have been rented and the accessible room requested is the only remaining room of that type;
      • (iv) Reserve, upon request, accessible guest rooms or specific types of guest rooms and ensure that the guest rooms requested are blocked and removed from all reservations systems; and
      • (v) Guarantee that the specific accessible guest room reserved through its reservations service is held for the reserving customer, regardless of whether a specific room is held in response to reservations made by others.
    • (2) Exception. The requirements in paragraphs (iii), (iv), and (v) of this section do not apply to reservations for individual guest rooms or other units not owned or substantially controlled by the entity that owns, leases, or operates the overall facility.
    • (3) Compliance date. The requirements in this section will apply to reservations made on or after March 15, 2012.
  • (f) Ticketing.
    • (1)
      • (i) For the purposes of this section, "accessible seating" is defined as wheelchair spaces and companion seats that comply with sections 221 and 802 of the 2010 Standards along with any other seats required to be offered for sale to the individual with a disability pursuant to paragraph (4) of this section.
      • (ii) Ticket sales. A public accommodation that sells tickets for a single event or series of events shall modify its policies, practices, or procedures to ensure that individuals with disabilities have an equal opportunity to purchase tickets for accessible seating –
        • (A) During the same hours;
        • (B) During the same stages of ticket sales, including, but not limited to, pre-sales, promotions, lotteries, wait-lists, and general sales;
        • (C) Through the same methods of distribution;
        • (D) In the same types and numbers of ticketing sales outlets, including telephone service, in-person ticket sales at the facility, or third-party ticketing services, as other patrons; and
        • (E) Under the same terms and conditions as other tickets sold for the same event or series of events.
    • (2) Identification of available accessible seating. A public accommodation that sells or distributes tickets for a single event or series of events shall, upon inquiry –
      • (i) Inform individuals with disabilities, their companions, and third parties purchasing tickets for accessible seating on behalf of individuals with disabilities of the locations of all unsold or otherwise available accessible seating for any ticketed event or events at the facility;
      • (ii) Identify and describe the features of available accessible seating in enough detail to reasonably permit an individual with a disability to assess independently whether a given accessible seating location meets his or her accessibility needs; and
      • (iii) Provide materials, such as seating maps, plans, brochures, pricing charts, or other information, that identify accessible seating and information relevant thereto with the same text or visual representations as other seats, if such materials are provided to the general public.
    • (3) Ticket prices. The price of tickets for accessible seating for a single event or series of events shall not be set higher than the price for other tickets in the same seating section for the same event or series of events. Tickets for accessible seating must be made available at all price levels for every event or series of events. If tickets for accessible seating at a particular price level cannot be provided because barrier removal in an existing facility is not readily achievable, then the percentage of tickets for accessible seating that should have been available at that price level but for the barriers (determined by the ratio of the total number of tickets at that price level to the total number of tickets in the assembly area) shall be offered for purchase, at that price level, in a nearby or similar accessible location.
    • (4) Purchasing multiple tickets.
      • (i) General. For each ticket for a wheelchair space purchased by an individual with a disability or a third-party purchasing such a ticket at his or her request, a public accommodation shall make available for purchase three additional tickets for seats in the same row that are contiguous with the wheelchair space, provided that at the time of purchase there are three such seats available. A public accommodation is not required to provide more than three contiguous seats for each wheelchair space. Such seats may include wheelchair spaces.
      • (ii) Insufficient additional contiguous seats available. If patrons are allowed to purchase at least four tickets, and there are fewer than three such additional contiguous seat tickets available for purchase, a public accommodation shall offer the next highest number of such seat tickets available for purchase and shall make up the difference by offering tickets for sale for seats that are as close as possible to the accessible seats.
      • (iii) Sales limited to fewer than four tickets. If a public accommodation limits sales of tickets to fewer than four seats per patron, then the public accommodation is only obligated to offer as many seats to patrons with disabilities, including the ticket for the wheelchair space, as it would offer to patrons without disabilities.
      • (iv) Maximum number of tickets patrons may purchase exceeds four. If patrons are allowed to purchase more than four tickets, a public accommodation shall allow patrons with disabilities to purchase up to the same number of tickets, including the ticket for the wheelchair space.
      • (v) Group sales. If a group includes one or more individuals who need to use accessible seating because of a mobility disability or because their disability requires the use of the accessible features that are provided in accessible seating, the group shall be placed in a seating area with accessible seating so that, if possible, the group can sit together. If it is necessary to divide the group, it should be divided so that the individuals in the group who use wheelchairs are not isolated from their group.
    • (5) Hold and release of tickets for accessible seating.
      • (i) Tickets for accessible seating may be released for sale in certain limited circumstances. A public accommodation may release unsold tickets for accessible seating for sale to individuals without disabilities for their own use for a single event or series of events only under the following circumstances –
        • (A) When all non-accessible tickets (excluding luxury boxes, club boxes, or suites) have been sold;
        • (B) When all non-accessible tickets in a designated seating area have been sold and the tickets for accessible seating are being released in the same designated area; or
        • (C) When all non-accessible tickets in a designated price category have been sold and the tickets for accessible seating are being released within the same designated price category.
      • (ii) No requirement to release accessible tickets. Nothing in this paragraph requires a facility to release tickets for accessible seating to individuals without disabilities for their own use.
      • (iii) Release of series-of-events tickets on a series-of-events basis.
        • (A) Series-of-events tickets sell-out when no ownership rights are attached. When series-of-events tickets are sold out and a public accommodation releases and sells accessible seating to individuals without disabilities for a series of events, the public accommodation shall establish a process that prevents the automatic reassignment of the accessible seating to such ticket holders for future seasons, future years, or future series, so that individuals with disabilities who require the features of accessible seating and who become newly eligible to purchase tickets when these series-of-events tickets are available for purchase have an opportunity to do so.
        • (B) Series-of-events tickets when ownership rights are attached. When series-of-events tickets with an ownership right in accessible seating areas are forfeited or otherwise returned to a public accommodation, the public accommodation shall make reasonable modifications in its policies, practices, or procedures to afford individuals with mobility disabilities or individuals with disabilities that require the features of accessible seating an opportunity to purchase such tickets in accessible seating areas.

    (6) Ticket transfer. Individuals with disabilities who hold tickets for accessible seating shall be permitted to transfer tickets to third parties under the same terms and conditions and to the same extent as other spectators holding the same type of tickets, whether they are for a single event or series of events.

    (7) Secondary ticket market.

    (i) A public accommodation shall modify its policies, practices, or procedures to ensure that an individual with a disability may use a ticket acquired in the secondary ticket market under the same terms and conditions as other individuals who hold a ticket acquired in the secondary ticket market for the same event or series of events.

    (ii) If an individual with a disability acquires a ticket or series of tickets to an inaccessible seat through the secondary market, a public accommodation shall make reasonable modifications to its policies, practices, or procedures to allow the individual to exchange his ticket for one to an accessible seat in a comparable location if accessible seating is vacant at the time the individual presents the ticket to the public accommodation.

    (8) Prevention of fraud in purchase of tickets for accessible seating. A public accommodation may not require proof of disability, including, for example, a doctor´s note, before selling tickets for accessible seating.

    (i) Single-event tickets. For the sale of single-event tickets, it is permissible to inquire whether the individual purchasing the tickets for accessible seating has a mobility disability or a disability that requires the use of the accessible features that are provided in accessible seating, or is purchasing the tickets for an individual who has a mobility disability or a disability that requires the use of the accessible features that are provided in the accessible seating.

    (ii) Series-of-events tickets. For series-of-events tickets, it is permissible to ask the individual purchasing the tickets for accessible seating to attest in writing that the accessible seating is for a person who has a mobility disability or a disability that requires the use of the accessible features that are provided in the accessible seating.

    (iii) Investigation of fraud. A public accommodation may investigate the potential misuse of accessible seating where there is good cause to believe that such seating has been purchased fraudulently.

§ 36.303 Auxiliary aids and services.

  • (a) General. A public accommodation shall take those steps that may be necessary to ensure that no individual with a disability is excluded, denied services, segregated or otherwise treated differently than other individuals because of the absence of auxiliary aids and services, unless the public accommodation can demonstrate that taking those steps would fundamentally alter the nature of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations being offered or would result in an undue burden, i.e., significant difficulty or expense.
  • (b) Examples. The term "auxiliary aids and services" includes –
    • (1) Qualified interpreters on-site or through video remote interpreting (VRI) services; notetakers; real-time computer-aided transcription services; written materials; exchange of written notes; telephone handset amplifiers; assistive listening devices; assistive listening systems; telephones compatible with hearing aids; closed caption decoders; open and closed captioning, including real-time captioning; voice, text, and video-based telecommunications products and systems, including text telephones (TTYs), videophones, and captioned telephones, or equally effective telecommunications devices; videotext displays; accessible electronic and information technology; or other effective methods of making aurally delivered information available to individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing;
    • (2) Qualified readers; taped texts; audio recordings; Brailled materials and displays; screen reader software; magnification software; optical readers; secondary auditory programs (SAP); large print materials; accessible electronic and information technology; or other effective methods of making visually delivered materials available to individuals who are blind or have low vision;
    • (3) Acquisition or modification of equipment or devices; and
    • (4) Other similar services and actions.
  • (c) Effective communication.
    • (1) A public accommodation shall furnish appropriate auxiliary aids and services where necessary to ensure effective communication with individuals with disabilities. This includes an obligation to provide effective communication to companions who are individuals with disabilities.
      • (i) For purposes of this section, "companion" means a family member, friend, or associate of an individual seeking access to, or participating in, the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations of a public accommodation, who, along with such individual, is an appropriate person with whom the public accommodation should communicate.
      • (ii) The type of auxiliary aid or service necessary to ensure effective communication will vary in accordance with the method of communication used by the individual; the nature, length, and complexity of the communication involved; and the context in which the communication is taking place. A public accommodation should consult with individuals with disabilities whenever possible to determine what type of auxiliary aid is needed to ensure effective communication, but the ultimate decision as to what measures to take rests with the public accommodation, provided that the method chosen results in effective communication. In order to be effective, auxiliary aids and services must be provided in accessible formats, in a timely manner, and in such a way as to protect the privacy and independence of the individual with a disability.
    • (2) A public accommodation shall not require an individual with a disability to bring another individual to interpret for him or her.
    • (3) A public accommodation shall not rely on an adult accompanying an individual with a disability to interpret or facilitate communication, except –
      • (i) In an emergency involving an imminent threat to the safety or welfare of an individual or the public where there is no interpreter available; or
      • (ii) Where the individual with a disability specifically requests that the accompanying adult interpret or facilitate communication, the accompanying adult agrees to provide such assistance, and reliance on that adult for such assistance is appropriate under the circumstances.
    • (4) A public accommodation shall not rely on a minor child to interpret or facilitate communication, except in an emergency involving an imminent threat to the safety or welfare of an individual or the public where there is no interpreter available.
  • (d) Telecommunications.
    • (1) When a public accommodation uses an automated-attendant system, including, but not limited to, voicemail and messaging, or an interactive voice response system, for receiving and directing incoming telephone calls, that system must provide effective real-time communication with individuals using auxiliary aids and services, including text telephones (TTYs) and all forms of FCC-approved telecommunications relay systems, including Internet-based relay systems.
    • (2) A public accommodation that offers a customer, client, patient, or participant the opportunity to make outgoing telephone calls using the public accommodation´s equipment on more than an incidental convenience basis shall make available public telephones, TTYs, or other telecommunications products and systems for use by an individual who is deaf or hard of hearing, or has a speech impairment.
    • (3) A public accommodation may use relay services in place of direct telephone communication for receiving or making telephone calls incident to its operations.
    • (4) A public accommodation shall respond to telephone calls from a telecommunications relay service established under title IV of the ADA in the same manner that it responds to other telephone calls.
    • (5) This part does not require a public accommodation to use a TTY for receiving or making telephone calls incident to its operations.
  • (e) Closed caption decoders. Places of lodging that provide televisions in five or more guest rooms and hospitals that provide televisions for patient use shall provide, upon request, a means for decoding captions for use by an individual with impaired hearing.
  • (f) Video remote interpreting (VRI) services. A public accommodation that chooses to provide qualified interpreters via VRI service shall ensure that it provides –
    • (1) Real-time, full-motion video and audio over a dedicated high-speed, wide-bandwidth video connection or wireless connection that delivers high-quality video images that do not produce lags, choppy, blurry, or grainy images, or irregular pauses in communication;
    • (2) A sharply delineated image that is large enough to display the interpreter´s face, arms, hands, and fingers, and the participating individual´s face, arms, hands, and fingers, regardless of his or her body position;
    • (3) A clear, audible transmission of voices; and
    • (4) Adequate training to users of the technology and other involved individuals so that they may quickly and efficiently set up and operate the VRI.
  • (g) Alternatives. If provision of a particular auxiliary aid or service by a public accommodation would result in a fundamental alteration in the nature of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations being offered or in an undue burden, i.e., significant difficulty or expense, the public accommodation shall provide an alternative auxiliary aid or service, if one exists, that would not result in an alteration or such burden but would nevertheless ensure that, to the maximum extent possible, individuals with disabilities receive the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations offered by the public accommodation.

§ 36.304 Removal of barriers.

  • (a) General. A public accommodation shall remove architectural barriers in existing facilities, including communication barriers that are structural in nature, where such removal is readily achievable, i.e., easily accomplishable and able to be carried out without much difficulty or expense.
  • (b) Examples. Examples of steps to remove barriers include, but are not limited to, the following actions –
    • (1) Installing ramps;
    • (2) Making curb cuts in sidewalks and entrances;
    • (3) Repositioning shelves;
    • (4) Rearranging tables, chairs, vending machines, display racks, and other furniture;
    • (5) Repositioning telephones;
    • (6) Adding raised markings on elevator control buttons;
    • (7) Installing flashing alarm lights;
    • (8) Widening doors;
    • (9) Installing offset hinges to widen doorways;
    • (10) Eliminating a turnstile or providing an alternative accessible path;
    • (11) Installing accessible door hardware;
    • (12) Installing grab bars in toilet stalls;
    • (13) Rearranging toilet partitions to increase maneuvering space;
    • (14) Insulating lavatory pipes under sinks to prevent burns;
    • (15) Installing a raised toilet seat;
    • (16) Installing a full-length bathroom mirror;
    • (17) Repositioning the paper towel dispenser in a bathroom;
    • (18) Creating designated accessible parking spaces;
    • (19) Installing an accessible paper cup dispenser at an existing inaccessible water fountain;
    • (20) Removing high pile, low density carpeting; or
    • (21) Installing vehicle hand controls.
  • (c) Priorities. A public accommodation is urged to take measures to comply with the barrier removal requirements of this section in accordance with the following order of priorities.
    • (1) First, a public accommodation should take measures to provide access to a place of public accommodation from public sidewalks, parking, or public transportation. These measures include, for example, installing an entrance ramp, widening entrances, and providing accessible parking spaces.
    • (2) Second, a public accommodation should take measures to provide access to those areas of a place of public accommodation where goods and services are made available to the public. These measures include, for example, adjusting the layout of display racks, rearranging tables, providing Brailled and raised character signage, widening doors, providing visual alarms, and installing ramps.
    • (3) Third, a 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.
    • (4) Fourth, a public accommodation should take any other measures necessary to provide access to the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations of a place of public accommodation.
  • (d) Relationship to alterations requirements of subpart D of this part.
    • (1) Except as provided in paragraph (d)(3) of this section, measures taken to comply with the barrier removal requirements of this section shall comply with the applicable requirements for alterations in § 36.402 and §§ 36.404 through36.406 of this part for the element being altered. The path of travel requirements of § 36.403 shall not apply to measures taken solely to comply with the barrier removal requirements of this section.
    • (2)
      • (i) Safe harbor. Elements that have not been altered in existing facilities on or after March 15, 2012,and that comply with the corresponding technical and scoping specifications for those elements in the 1991 Standards are not required to be modified in order to comply with the requirements set forth in the 2010 Standards.
      • (ii)
        • (A) Before March 15, 2012, elements in existing facilities that do not comply with the corresponding technical and scoping specifications for those elements in the 1991 Standards must be modified to the extent readily achievable to comply with either the 1991 Standards or the 2010 Standards. Noncomplying newly constructed and altered elements may also be subject to the requirements of § 36.406(a)(5).
        • (B) On or after March 15, 2012, elements in existing facilities that do not comply with the corresponding technical and scoping specifications for those elements in the 1991 Standards must be modified to the extent readily achievable to comply with the requirements set forth in the 2010 Standards. Noncomplying newly constructed and altered elements may also be subject to the requirements of § 36.406(a)(5).
      • (iii) The safe harbor provided in § 36.304(d)(2)(i) does not apply to those elements in existing facilities that are subject to supplemental requirements (i.e., elements for which there are neither technical nor scoping specifications in the 1991 Standards), and therefore those elements must be modified to the extent readily achievable to comply with the 2010 Standards. Noncomplying newly constructed and altered elements may also be subject to the requirements of § 36.406(a)(5). Elements in the 2010 Standards not eligible for the element-by-element safe harbor are identified as follows –
        • (A) Residential facilities and dwelling units, sections 233 and 809.
        • (B) Amusement rides, sections 234 and 1002; 206.2.9; 216.12.
        • (C) Recreational boating facilities, sections 235 and 1003; 206.2.10.
        • (D) Exercise machines and equipment, sections 236 and 1004; 206.2.13.
        • (E) Fishing piers and platforms, sections 237 and 1005; 206.2.14.
        • (F) Golf facilities, sections 238 and 1006; 206.2.15.
        • (G) Miniature golf facilities, sections 239 and 1007; 206.2.16.
        • (H) Play areas, sections 240 and 1008; 206.2.17.
        • (I) Saunas and steam rooms, sections 241 and 612.
        • (J) Swimming pools, wading pools, and spas, sections 242 and 1009.
        • (K) Shooting facilities with firing positions, sections 243 and 1010.
        • (L) Miscellaneous.
        • (1) Team or player seating, section 221.2.1.4.
        • (2) Accessible route to bowling lanes, section 206.2.11.
        • (3) Accessible route in court sports facilities, section 206.2.12.

Appendix to § 36.304(d)

Compliance Dates and Applicable Standards for Barrier Removal and Safe Harbor
Date Requirement Applicable Standards
Before March 15, 2012

Elements that do not comply with the requirements for those elements in the 1991 Standards must be modified to the extent readily achievable.

Note: Noncomplying newly constructed and altered elements may also be subject to the requirements of § 36.406(a)(5).

1991 Standards or 2010 Standards
On or after March 15, 2012

Elements that do not comply with the requirements for those elements in the 1991 Standards or that do not comply with the supplemental requirements (i.e., elements for which there are neither technical nor scoping specifications in the 1991 Standards) must be modified to the extent readily achievable.

Note: Noncomplying newly constructed and altered elements may also be subject to the requirements of § 36.406(a)(5).

2010 Standards
Elements not altered afterMarch 15, 2012 Elements that comply with the requirements for those elements in the 1991 Standards do not need to be modified. Safe Harbor
      • (3) If, as a result of compliance with the alterations requirements specified in paragraph (d)(1) and (d)(2) of this section, the measures required to remove a barrier would not be readily achievable, a public accommodation may take other readily achievable measures to remove the barrier that do not fully comply with the specified requirements. Such measures include, for example, providing a ramp with a steeper slope or widening a doorway to a narrower width than that mandated by the alterations requirements. No measure shall be taken, however, that poses a significant risk to the health or safety of individuals with disabilities or others.
  • (e) Portable ramps. Portable ramps should be used to comply with this section only when installation of a permanent ramp is not readily achievable. In order to avoid any significant risk to the health or safety of individuals with disabilities or others in using portable ramps, due consideration shall be given to safety features such as nonslip surfaces, railings, anchoring, and strength of materials.
  • (f) Selling or serving space. The rearrangement of temporary or movable structures, such as furniture, equipment, and display racks is not readily achievable to the extent that it results in a significant loss of selling or serving space.
  • (g) Limitation on barrier removal obligations. (1) The requirements for barrier removal under § 36.304 shall not be interpreted to exceed the standards for alterations in subpart D of this part.
  • (2) To the extent that relevant standards for alterations are not provided in subpart D of this part, then the requirements of § 36.304 shall not be interpreted to exceed the standards for new construction in subpart D of this part.
  • (3) This section does not apply to rolling stock and other conveyances to the extent that § 36.310 applies to rolling stock and other conveyances.
  • (4) This requirement does not apply to guest rooms in existing facilities that are places of lodging where the guest rooms are not owned by the entity that owns, leases, or operates the overall facility and the physical features of the guest room interiors are controlled by their individual owners.

§ 36.305 Alternatives to barrier removal.

  • (a) General. Where a public accommodation can demonstrate that barrier removal is not readily achievable, the public accommodation shall not fail to make its goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations available through alternative methods, if those methods are readily achievable.
  • (b) Examples. Examples of alternatives to barrier removal include, but are not limited to, the following actions –
    • (1) Providing curb service or home delivery;
    • (2) Retrieving merchandise from inaccessible shelves or racks;
    • (3) Relocating activities to accessible locations;
  • (c) Multiscreen cinemas. If it is not readily achievable to remove barriers to provide access by persons with mobility impairments to all of the theaters of a multiscreen cinema, the cinema shall establish a film rotation schedule that provides reasonable access for individuals who use wheelchairs to all films. Reasonable notice shall be provided to the public as to the location and time of accessible showings.

§ 36.306 Personal devices and services.

This part does not require a public accommodation to provide its customers, clients, or participants with personal devices, such as wheelchairs; individually prescribed devices, such as prescription eyeglasses or hearing aids; or services of a personal nature including assistance in eating, toileting, or dressing.

§ 36.307 Accessible or special goods.

  • (a) This part does not require a public accommodation to alter its inventory to include accessible or special goods that are designed for, or facilitate use by, individuals with disabilities.
  • (b) A public accommodation shall order accessible or special goods at the request of an individual with disabilities, if, in the normal course of its operation, it makes special orders on request for unstocked goods, and if the accessible or special goods can be obtained from a supplier with whom the public accommodation customarily does business.
  • (c) Examples of accessible or special goods include items such as Brailled versions of books, books on audio cassettes, closed-captioned video tapes, special sizes or lines of clothing, and special foods to meet particular dietary needs.

§ 36.308 Seating in assembly areas.

A public accommodation shall ensure that wheelchair spaces and companion seats are provided in each specialty seating area that provides spectators with distinct services or amenities that generally are not available to other spectators. If it is not readily achievable for a public accommodation to place wheelchair spaces and companion seats in each such specialty seating area, it shall provide those services or amenities to individuals with disabilities and their companions at other designated accessible locations at no additional cost. The number of wheelchair spaces and companion seats provided in specialty seating areas shall be included in, rather than in addition to, wheelchair space requirements set forth in table 221.2.1.1 in the 2010 Standards.

§ 36.309 Examinations and courses.

  • (a) General. Any private entity that offers examinations or courses related to applications, licensing, certification, or credentialing for secondary or postsecondary education, professional, or trade purposes shall offer such examinations or courses in a place and manner accessible to persons with disabilities or offer alternative accessible arrangements for such individuals.
  • (b) Examinations.
    • (1) Any private entity offering an examination covered by this section must assure that –
      • (i) The examination is selected and administered so as to best ensure that, when the examination is administered to an individual with a disability that impairs sensory, manual, or speaking skills, the examination results accurately reflect the individual´s aptitude or achievement level or whatever other factor the examination purports to measure, rather than reflecting the individual´s impaired sensory, manual, or speaking skills (except where those skills are the factors that the examination purports to measure);
      • (ii) An examination that is designed for individuals with impaired sensory, manual, or speaking skills is offered at equally convenient locations, as often, and in as timely a manner as are other examinations; and
      • (iii) The examination is administered in facilities that are accessible to individuals with disabilities or alternative accessible arrangements are made.
      • (iv) Any request for documentation, if such documentation is required, is reasonable and limited to the need for the modification, accommodation, or auxiliary aid or service requested.
      • (v) When considering requests for modifications, accommodations, or auxiliary aids or services, the entity gives considerable weight to documentation of past modifications, accommodations, or auxiliary aids or services received in similar testing situations, as well as such modifications, accommodations, or related aids and services provided in response to an Individualized Education Program (IEP) provided under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act or a plan describing services provided pursuant to section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended (often referred as a Section 504 Plan).
      • (vi) The entity responds in a timely manner to requests for modifications, accommodations, or aids to ensure equal opportunity for individuals with disabilities.
    • (2) Required modifications to an examination may include changes in the length of time permitted for completion of the examination and adaptation of the manner in which the examination is given.
    • (3) A private entity offering an examination covered by this section shall provide appropriate auxiliary aids for persons with impaired sensory, manual, or speaking skills, unless that private entity can demonstrate that offering a particular auxiliary aid would fundamentally alter the measurement of the skills or knowledge the examination is intended to test or would result in an undue burden. Auxiliary aids and services required by this section may include taped examinations, interpreters or other effective methods of making orally delivered materials available to individuals with hearing impairments, Brailled or large print examinations and answer sheets or qualified readers for individuals with visual impairments or learning disabilities, transcribers for individuals with manual impairments, and other similar services and actions.
    • (4) Alternative accessible arrangements may include, for example, provision of an examination at an individual´s home with a proctor if accessible facilities or equipment are unavailable. Alternative arrangements must provide comparable conditions to those provided for nondisabled individuals.
  • (c) Courses.
    • (1) Any private entity that offers a course covered by this section must make such modifications to that course as are necessary to ensure that the place and manner in which the course is given are accessible to individuals with disabilities.
    • (2) Required modifications may include changes in the length of time permitted for the completion of the course, substitution of specific requirements, or adaptation of the manner in which the course is conducted or course materials are distributed.
    • (3) A private entity that offers a course covered by this section shall provide appropriate auxiliary aids and services for persons with impaired sensory, manual, or speaking skills, unless the private entity can demonstrate that offering a particular auxiliary aid or service would fundamentally alter the course or would result in an undue burden. Auxiliary aids and services required by this section may include taped texts, interpreters or other effective methods of making orally delivered materials available to individuals with hearing impairments, Brailled or large print texts or qualified readers for individuals with visual impairments and learning disabilities, classroom equipment adapted for use by individuals with manual impairments, and other similar services and actions.
    • (4) Courses must be administered in facilities that are accessible to individuals with disabilities or alternative accessible arrangements must be made.
    • (5) Alternative accessible arrangements may include, for example, provision of the course through videotape, cassettes, or prepared notes. Alternative arrangements must provide comparable conditions to those provided for nondisabled individuals.

§ 36.310 Transportation provided by public accommodations.

  • (a) General.
    • (1) A public accommodation that provides transportation services, but that is not primarily engaged in the business of transporting people, is subject to the general and specific provisions in subparts B, C, and D of this part for its transportation operations, except as provided in this section.
    • (2) Examples. Transportation services subject to this section include, but are not limited to, shuttle services operated between transportation terminals and places of public accommodation, customer shuttle bus services operated by private companies and shopping centers, student transportation systems, and transportation provided within recreational facilities such as stadiums, zoos, amusement parks, and ski resorts.
  • (b) Barrier removal. A public accommodation subject to this section shall remove transportation barriers in existing vehicles and rail passenger cars used for transporting individuals (not including barriers that can only be removed through the retrofitting of vehicles or rail passenger cars by the installation of a hydraulic or other lift) where such removal is readily achievable.
  • (c) Requirements for vehicles and systems. A public accommodation subject to this section shall comply with the requirements pertaining to vehicles and transportation systems in the regulations issued by the Secretary of Transportation pursuant to section 306 of the Act.

§ 36.311 Mobility devices.

  • (a) Use of wheelchairs and manually-powered mobility aids. A public accommodation shall permit individuals with mobility disabilities to use wheelchairs and manually-powered mobility aids, such as walkers, crutches, canes, braces, or other similar devices designed for use by individuals with mobility disabilities in any areas open to pedestrian use.
  • (b)
    • (1) Use of other power-driven mobility devices. A public accommodation shall make reasonable modifications in its policies, practices, or procedures to permit the use of other power-driven mobility devices by individuals with mobility disabilities, unless the public accommodation can demonstrate that the class of other power-driven mobility devices cannot be operated in accordance with legitimate safety requirements that the public accommodation has adopted pursuant to § 36.301(b).
    • (2) Assessment factors. In determining whether a particular other power-driven mobility device can be allowed in a specific facility as a reasonable modification under paragraph (b)(1) of this section, a public accommodation shall consider –
      • (i) The type, size, weight, dimensions, and speed of the device;
      • (ii) The facility´s volume of pedestrian traffic (which may vary at different times of the day, week, month, or year);
      • (iii) The facility´s design and operational characteristics (e.g., whether its business is conducted indoors, its square footage, the density and placement of stationary devices, and the availability of storage for the device, if requested by the user);
      • (iv) Whether legitimate safety requirements can be established to permit the safe operation of the other power-driven mobility device in the specific facility; and
      • (v) Whether the use of the other power-driven mobility device creates a substantial risk of serious harm to the immediate environment or natural or cultural resources, or poses a conflict with Federal land management laws and regulations.
  • (c)
    • (1) Inquiry about disability. A public accommodation shall not ask an individual using a wheelchair or other power-driven mobility device questions about the nature and extent of the individual´s disability.
    • (2) Inquiry into use of other power-driven mobility device. A public accommodation may ask a person using an other power-driven mobility device to provide a credible assurance that the mobility device is required because of the person´s disability. A public accommodation that permits the use of an other power-driven mobility device by an individual with a mobility disability shall accept the presentation of a valid, State-issued disability parking placard or card, or State-issued proof of disability, as a credible assurance that the use of the other power-driven mobility device is for the individual´s mobility disability. In lieu of a valid, State-issued disability parking placard or card, or State-issued proof of disability, a public accommodation shall accept as a credible assurance a verbal representation, not contradicted by observable fact, that the other power-driven mobility device is being used for a mobility disability. A "valid" disability placard or card is one that is presented by the individual to whom it was issued and is otherwise in compliance with the State of issuance´s requirements for disability placards or cards.

§ § 36.312 – 36.399 [Reserved]

Subpart D – New Construction and Alterations

§ 36.401 New construction.

  • (a) General.
    • (1) Except as provided in paragraphs (b) and (c) of this section, discrimination for purposes of this part includes a failure to design and construct facilities for first occupancy after January 26, 1993, that are readily accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities.
    • (2) For purposes of this section, a facility is designed and constructed for first occupancy after January 26, 1993, only –
      • (i) If the last application for a building permit or permit extension for the facility is certified to be complete, by a State, County, or local government after January 26, 1992 (or, in those jurisdictions where the government does not certify completion of applications, if the last application for a building permit or permit extension for the facility is received by the State, County, or local government after January 26, 1992); and
      • (ii) If the first certificate of occupancy for the facility is issued after January 26, 1993.
  • (b) Commercial facilities located in private residences.
    • (1) When a commercial facility is located in a private residence, the portion of the residence used exclusively as a residence is not covered by this subpart, but that portion used exclusively in the operation of the commercial facility or that portion used both for the commercial facility and for residential purposes is covered by the new construction and alterations requirements of this subpart.
    • (2) The portion of the residence covered under paragraph (b)(1) of this section extends to those elements used to enter the commercial facility, including the homeowner´s front sidewalk, if any, the door or entryway, and hallways; and those portions of the residence, interior or exterior, available to or used by employees or visitors of the commercial facility, including restrooms.
  • (c) Exception for structural impracticability.
    • (1) Full compliance with the requirements of this section is not required where an entity can demonstrate that it is structurally impracticable to meet the requirements. Full compliance will be considered structurally impracticable only in those rare circumstances when the unique characteristics of terrain prevent the incorporation of accessibility features.
    • (2) If full compliance with this section would be structurally impracticable, compliance with this section is required to the extent that it is not structurally impracticable. In that case, any portion of the facility that can be made accessible shall be made accessible to the extent that it is not structurally impracticable.
    • (3) If providing accessibility in conformance with this section to individuals with certain disabilities (e.g., those who use wheelchairs) would be structurally impracticable, accessibility shall nonetheless be ensured to persons with other types of disabilities (e.g., those who use crutches or who have sight, hearing, or mental impairments) in accordance with this section.
  • (d) Elevator exemption.
    • (1) For purposes of this paragraph (d) –
      • (i) Professional office of a health care provider means a location where a person or entity regulated by a State to provide professional services related to the physical or mental health of an individual makes such services available to the public. The facility housing the "professional office of a health care provider" only includes floor levels housing at least one health care provider, or any floor level designed or intended for use by at least one health care provider.
      • (ii) Shopping center or shopping mall means –
        • (A) A building housing five or more sales or rental establishments; or
        • (B) A series of buildings on a common site, either under common ownership or common control or developed either as one project or as a series of related projects, housing five or more sales or rental establishments. For purposes of this section, places of public accommodation of the types listed in paragraph (5) of the definition of "place of public accommodation" in section § 36.104 are considered sales or rental establishments. The facility housing a "shopping center or shopping mall" only includes floor levels housing at least one sales or rental establishment, or any floor level designed or intended for use by at least one sales or rental establishment.
    • (2) This section does not require the installation of an elevator in a facility that is less than three stories or has less than 3000 square feet per story, except with respect to any facility that houses one or more of the following:
      • (i) A shopping center or shopping mall, or a professional office of a health care provider.
      • (ii) A terminal, depot, or other station used for specified public transportation, or an airport passenger terminal. In such a facility, any area housing passenger services, including boarding and debarking, loading and unloading, baggage claim, dining facilities, and other common areas open to the public, must be on an accessible route from an accessible entrance.
    • (3) The elevator exemption set forth in this paragraph (d) does not obviate or limit, in any way the obligation to comply with the other accessibility requirements established in paragraph (a) of this section. For example, in a facility that houses a shopping center or shopping mall, or a professional office of a health care provider, the floors that are above or below an accessible ground floor and that do not house sales or rental establishments or a professional office of a health care provider, must meet the requirements of this section but for the elevator.

§ 36.402 Alterations.

  • (a) General.
    • (1) Any alteration to a place of public accommodation or a commercial facility, after January 26, 1992, shall be made so as to ensure that, to the maximum extent feasible, the altered portions of the facility are readily accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities, including individuals who use wheelchairs.
    • (2) An alteration is deemed to be undertaken after January 26, 1992, if the physical alteration of the property begins after that date.
  • (b) Alteration. For the purposes of this part, an alteration is a change to a place of public accommodation or a commercial facility that affects or could affect the usability of the building or facility or any part thereof.
    • (1) Alterations include, but are not limited to, remodeling, renovation, rehabilitation, reconstruction, historic restoration, changes or rearrangement in structural parts or elements, and changes or rearrangement in the plan configuration of walls and full-height partitions. Normal maintenance, reroofing, painting or wallpapering, asbestos removal, or changes to mechanical and electrical systems are not alterations unless they affect the usability of the building or facility.
    • (2) If existing elements, spaces, or common areas are altered, then each such altered element, space, or area shall comply with the applicable provisions of appendix A to this part.
  • (c) To the maximum extent feasible. The phrase "to the maximum extent feasible," as used in this section, applies to the occasional case where the nature of an existing facility makes it virtually impossible to comply fully with applicable accessibility standards through a planned alteration. In these circumstances, the alteration shall provide the maximum physical accessibility feasible. Any altered features of the facility that can be made accessible shall be made accessible. If providing accessibility in conformance with this section to individuals with certain disabilities (e.g., those who use wheelchairs) would not be feasible, the facility shall be made accessible to persons with other types of disabilities (e.g., those who use crutches, those who have impaired vision or hearing, or those who have other impairments).

§ 36.403 Alterations: Path of travel.

  • (a) General.
    • (1) An alteration that affects or could affect the usability of or access to an area of a facility that contains a primary function shall be made so as to ensure that, to the maximum extent feasible, the path of travel to the altered area and the restrooms, telephones, and drinking fountains serving the altered area, are readily accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities, including individuals who use wheelchairs, unless the cost and scope of such alterations is disproportionate to the cost of the overall alteration.
    • (2) If a private entity has constructed or altered required elements of a path of travel at a place of public accommodation or commercial facility in accordance with the specifications in the 1991 Standards, the private entity is not required to retrofit such elements to reflect the incremental changes in the 2010 Standards solely because of an alteration to a primary function area served by that path of travel.
  • (b) Primary function. A "primary function" is a major activity for which the facility is intended. Areas that contain a primary function include, but are not limited to, the customer services lobby of a bank, the dining area of a cafeteria, the meeting rooms in a conference center, as well as offices and other work areas in which the activities of the public accommodation or other private entity using the facility are carried out. Mechanical rooms, boiler rooms, supply storage rooms, employee lounges or locker rooms, janitorial closets, entrances, corridors, and restrooms are not areas containing a primary function.
  • (c) Alterations to an area containing a primary function.
    • (1) Alterations that affect the usability of or access to an area containing a primary function include, but are not limited to –
      • (i) Remodeling merchandise display areas or employee work areas in a department store;
      • (ii) Replacing an inaccessible floor surface in the customer service or employee work areas of a bank;
      • (iii) Redesigning the assembly line area of a factory; or
      • (iv) Installing a computer center in an accounting firm.
    • (2) For the purposes of this section, alterations to windows, hardware, controls, electrical outlets, and signage shall not be deemed to be alterations that affect the usability of or access to an area containing a primary function.
  • (d) Landlord/tenant: If a tenant is making alterations as defined in § 36.402 that would trigger the requirements of this section, those alterations by the tenant in areas that only the tenant occupies do not trigger a path of travel obligation upon the landlord with respect to areas of the facility under the landlord´s authority, if those areas are not otherwise being altered.
  • (e) Path of travel.
    • (1) A "path of travel" includes a continuous, unobstructed way of pedestrian passage by means of which the altered area may be approached, entered, and exited, and which connects the altered area with an exterior approach (including sidewalks, streets, and parking areas), an entrance to the facility, and other parts of the facility.
    • (2) An accessible path of travel may consist of walks and sidewalks, curb ramps and other interior or exterior pedestrian ramps; clear floor paths through lobbies, corridors, rooms, and other improved areas; parking access aisles; elevators and lifts; or a combination of these elements.
    • (3) For the purposes of this part, the term "path of travel" also includes the restrooms, telephones, and drinking fountains serving the altered area.
  • (f) Disproportionality.
    • (1) Alterations made to provide an accessible path of travel to the altered area will be deemed disproportionate to the overall alteration when the cost exceeds 20% of the cost of the alteration to the primary function area.
    • (2) Costs that may be counted as expenditures required to provide an accessible path of travel may include:
      • (i) Costs associated with providing an accessible entrance and an accessible route to the altered area, for example, the cost of widening doorways or installing ramps;
      • (ii) Costs associated with making restrooms accessible, such as installing grab bars, enlarging toilet stalls, insulating pipes, or installing accessible faucet controls;
      • (iii) Costs associated with providing accessible telephones, such as relocating the telephone to an accessible height, installing amplification devices, or installing a text telephone (TTY);
      • (iv) Costs associated with relocating an inaccessible drinking fountain.
  • (g) Duty to provide accessible features in the event of disproportionality.
    • (1) When the cost of alterations necessary to make the path of travel to the altered area fully accessible is disproportionate to the cost of the overall alteration, the path of travel shall be made accessible to the extent that it can be made accessible without incurring disproportionate costs.
    • (2) In choosing which accessible elements to provide, priority should be given to those elements that will provide the greatest access, in the following order:
      • (i) An accessible entrance;
      • (ii) An accessible route to the altered area;
      • (iii) At least one accessible restroom for each sex or a single unisex restroom;
      • (iv) Accessible telephones;
      • (v) Accessible drinking fountains; and
      • (vi) When possible, additional accessible elements such as parking, storage, and alarms.
  • (h) Series of smaller alterations.
    • (1) The obligation to provide an accessible path of travel may not be evaded by performing a series of small alterations to the area served by a single path of travel if those alterations could have been performed as a single undertaking.
    • (2)
      • (i) If an area containing a primary function has been altered without providing an accessible path of travel to that area, and subsequent alterations of that area, or a different area on the same path of travel, are undertaken within three years of the original alteration, the total cost of alterations to the primary function areas on that path of travel during the preceding three year period shall be considered in determining whether the cost of making that path of travel accessible is disproportionate.
      • (ii) Only alterations undertaken after January 26, 1992, shall be considered in determining if the cost of providing an accessible path of travel is disproportionate to the overall cost of the alterations.

§ 36.404 Alterations: Elevator exemption.

  • (a) This section does not require the installation of an elevator in an altered facility that is less than three stories or has less than 3,000 square feet per story, except with respect to any facility that houses a shopping center, a shopping mall, the professional office of a health care provider, a terminal, depot, or other station used for specified public transportation, or an airport passenger terminal.
    • (1) For the purposes of this section, "professional office of a health care provider" means a location where a person or entity regulated by a State to provide professional services related to the physical or mental health of an individual makes such services available to the public. The facility that houses a "professional office of a health care provider" only includes floor levels housing by at least one health care provider, or any floor level designed or intended for use by at least one health care provider.
    • (2) For the purposes of this section, shopping center or shopping mall means –
      • (i) A building housing five or more sales or rental establishments; or
      • (ii) A series of buildings on a common site, connected by a common pedestrian access route above or below the ground floor, that is either under common ownership or common control or developed either as one project or as a series of related projects, housing five or more sales or rental establishments. For purposes of this section, places of public accommodation of the types listed in paragraph (5) of the definition of "place of public accommodation" in § 36.104 are considered sales or rental establishments. The facility housing a "shopping center or shopping mall" only includes floor levels housing at least one sales or rental establishment, or any floor level designed or intended for use by at least one sales or rental establishment.
  • (b) The exemption provided in paragraph (a) of this section does not obviate or limit in any way the obligation to comply with the other accessibility requirements established in this subpart. For example, alterations to floors above or below the accessible ground floor must be accessible regardless of whether the altered facility has an elevator.

§ 36.405 Alterations: Historic preservation.

  • (a) Alterations to buildings or facilities that are eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places under the National Historic Preservation Act (16 U.S.C. 470 et seq.) or are designated as historic under State or local law, shall comply to the maximum extent feasible with this part.
  • (b) If it is determined that it is not feasible to provide physical access to an historic property that is a place of public accommodation in a manner that will not threaten or destroy the historic significance of the building or the facility, alternative methods of access shall be provided pursuant to the requirements of subpart C of this part.

§ 36.406 Standards for new construction and alterations.

  • (a) Accessibility standards and compliance date.
    • (1) New construction and alterations subject to §§ 36.401 or 36.402 shall comply with the 1991 Standards if the date when the last application for a building permit or permit extension is certified to be complete by a State, county, or local government (or, in those jurisdictions where the government does not certify completion of applications, if the date when the last application for a building permit or permit extension is received by the State, county, or local government) is before September 15, 2010, or if no permit is required, if the start of physical construction or alterations occurs before September 15, 2010.
    • (2) New construction and alterations subject to §§ 36.401 or 36.402 shall comply either with the 1991 Standards or with the 2010 Standards if the date when the last application for a building permit or permit extension is certified to be complete by a State, county, or local government (or, in those jurisdictions where the government does not certify completion of applications, if the date when the last application for a building permit or permit extension is received by the State, county, or local government) is on or after September 15, 2010, and before March 15, 2012, or if no permit is required, if the start of physical construction or alterations occurs on or after September 15, 2010, and before March 15, 2012.
    • (3) New construction and alterations subject to §§ 36.401 or 36.402 shall comply with the 2010 Standards if the date when the last application for a building permit or permit extension is certified to be complete by a State, county, or local government (or, in those jurisdictions where the government does not certify completion of applications, if the date when the last application for a building permit or permit extension is received by the State, county, or local government) is on or after March 15, 2012, or if no permit is required, if the start of physical construction or alterations occurs on or after March 15, 2012.
    • (4) For the purposes of this section, "start of physical construction or alterations" does not mean ceremonial groundbreaking or razing of structures prior to site preparation.
    • (5) Noncomplying new construction and alterations.
      • (i) Newly constructed or altered facilities or elements covered by §§ 36.401 or 36.402 that were constructed or altered before March 15, 2012, and that do not comply with the 1991 Standards shall, before March 15, 2012, be made accessible in accordance with either the 1991 Standards or the 2010 Standards.
      • (ii) Newly constructed or altered facilities or elements covered by §§ 36.401 or 36.402 that were constructed or altered before March 15, 2012 that do not comply with the 1991 Standards shall, on or after March 15, 2012, be made accessible in accordance with the 2010 Standards.

Appendix to § 36.406(a)

Compliance Dates for New Construction and Alterations Applicable Standards
On or after January 26, 1993 and before September 15, 2010 1991 Standards
On or after September 15, 2010, and before March 15, 2012 1991 Standards or 2010 Standards
On or after March 15, 2012 2010 Standards
  • (b) Scope of coverage. The 1991 Standards and the 2010 Standards apply to fixed or built-in elements of buildings, structures, site improvements, and pedestrian routes or vehicular ways located on a site. Unless specifically stated otherwise, advisory notes, appendix notes, and figures contained in the 1991 Standards and 2010 Standards explain or illustrate the requirements of the rule; they do not establish enforceable requirements.
  • (c) Places of lodging. Places of lodging subject to this part shall comply with the provisions of the 2010 Standards applicable to transient lodging, including, but not limited to, the requirements for transient lodging guest rooms in sections 224 and 806 of the 2010 Standards.
    • (1) Guest rooms. Guest rooms with mobility features in places of lodging subject to the transient lodging requirements of 2010 Standards shall be provided as follows –
      • (i) Facilities that are subject to the same permit application on a common site that each have 50 or fewer guest rooms may be combined for the purposes of determining the required number of accessible rooms and type of accessible bathing facility in accordance with table 224.2 to section 224.2 of the 2010 Standards.
      • (ii) Facilities with more than 50 guest rooms shall be treated separately for the purposes of determining the required number of accessible rooms and type of accessible bathing facility in accordance with table 224.2 to section 224.2 of the 2010 Standards.
    • (2) Exception. Alterations to guest rooms in places of lodging where the guest rooms are not owned or substantially controlled by the entity that owns, leases, or operates the overall facility and the physical features of the guest room interiors are controlled by their individual owners are not required to comply with § 36.402 or the alterations requirements in section 224.1.1 of the 2010 Standards.
    • (3) Facilities with residential units and transient lodging units. Residential dwelling units that are designed and constructed for residential use exclusively are not subject to the transient lodging standards.
  • (d) Social service center establishments. Group homes, halfway houses, shelters, or similar social service center establishments that provide either temporary sleeping accommodations or residential dwelling units that are subject to this part shall comply with the provisions of the 2010 Standards applicable to residential facilities, including, but not limited to, the provisions in sections 233 and 809.
    • (1) In sleeping rooms with more than 25 beds covered by this part, a minimum of 5% of the beds shall have clear floor space complying with section 806.2.3 of the 2010 Standards.
    • (2) Facilities with more than 50 beds covered by this part that provide common use bathing facilities shall provide at least one roll-in shower with a seat that complies with the relevant provisions of section 608 of the 2010 Standards. Transfer-type showers are not permitted in lieu of a roll-in shower with a seat, and the exceptions in sections 608.3 and 608.4 for residential dwelling units are not permitted. When separate shower facilities are provided for men and for women, at least one roll-in shower shall be provided for each group.
  • (e) Housing at a place of education. Housing at a place of education that is subject to this part shall comply with the provisions of the 2010 Standards applicable to transient lodging, including, but not limited to, the requirements for transient lodging guest rooms in sections 224 and 806, subject to the following exceptions. For the purposes of the application of this section, the term "sleeping room" is intended to be used interchangeably with the term "guest room" as it is used in the transient lodging standards.
    • (1) Kitchens within housing units containing accessible sleeping rooms with mobility features (including suites and clustered sleeping rooms) or on floors containing accessible sleeping rooms with mobility features shall provide turning spaces that comply with section 809.2.2 of the 2010 Standards and kitchen work surfaces that comply with section 804.3 of the 2010 Standards.
    • (2) Multi-bedroom housing units containing accessible sleeping rooms with mobility features shall have an accessible route throughout the unit in accordance with section 809.2 of the 2010 Standards.
    • (3) Apartments or townhouse facilities that are provided by or on behalf of a place of education, which are leased on a year-round basis exclusively to graduate students or faculty and do not contain any public use or common use areas available for educational programming, are not subject to the transient lodging standards and shall comply with the requirements for residential facilities in sections 233 and 809 of the 2010 Standards.
  • (f) Assembly areas. Assembly areas that are subject to this part shall comply with the provisions of the 2010 Standards applicable to assembly areas, including, but not limited to, sections 221 and 802. In addition, assembly areas shall ensure that –
    • (1) In stadiums, arenas, and grandstands, wheelchair spaces and companion seats are dispersed to all levels that include seating served by an accessible route;
    • (2) In assembly areas that are required to horizontally disperse wheelchair spaces and companion seats by section 221.2.3.1 of the 2010 Standards and that have seating encircling, in whole or in part, a field of play or performance, wheelchair spaces and companion seats are dispersed around that field of play or performance area;
    • (3) Wheelchair spaces and companion seats are not located on (or obstructed by) temporary platforms or other movable structures, except that when an entire seating section is placed on temporary platforms or other movable structures in an area where fixed seating is not provided, in order to increase seating for an event, wheelchair spaces and companion seats may be placed in that section. When wheelchair spaces and companion seats are not required to accommodate persons eligible for those spaces and seats, individual, removable seats may be placed in those spaces and seats;
    • (4) In stadium-style movie theaters, wheelchair spaces and companion seats are located on a riser or cross-aisle in the stadium section that satisfies at least one of the following criteria –
      • (i) It is located within the rear 60% of the seats provided in an auditorium; or
      • (ii) It is located within the area of an auditorium in which the vertical viewing angles (as measured to the top of the screen) are from the 40th to the 100th percentile of vertical viewing angles for all seats as ranked from the seats in the first row (1st percentile) to seats in the back row (100th percentile).
  • (g) Medical care facilities. Medical care facilities that are subject to this part shall comply with the provisions of the 2010 Standards applicable to medical care facilities, including, but not limited to, sections 223 and 805. In addition, medical care facilities that do not specialize in the treatment of conditions that affect mobility shall disperse the accessible patient bedrooms required by section 223.2.1 of the 2010 Standards in a manner that is proportionate by type of medical specialty.

§ §36.407 – 36.499 [Reserved]

Subpart E – Enforcement

§ 36.501 Private suits.

  • (a) General. Any person who is being subjected to discrimination on the basis of disability in violation of the Act or this part or who has reasonable grounds for believing that such person is about to be subjected to discrimination in violation of section 303 of the Act or subpart D of this part may institute a civil action for preventive relief, including an application for a permanent or temporary injunction, restraining order, or other order. Upon timely application, the court may, in its discretion, permit the Attorney General to intervene in the civil action if the Attorney General or his or her designee certifies that the case is of general public importance. Upon application by the complainant and in such circumstances as the court may deem just, the court may appoint an attorney for such complainant and may authorize the commencement of the civil action without the payment of fees, costs, or security. Nothing in this section shall require a person with a disability to engage in a futile gesture if the person has actual notice that a person or organization covered by title III of the Act or this part does not intend to comply with its provisions.
  • (b) Injunctive relief. In the case of violations of § 36.304, § §36.308, 36.310(b), 36.401, 36.402, 36.403, and 36.405 of this part, injunctive relief shall include an order to alter facilities to make such facilities readily accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities to the extent required by the Act or this part. Where appropriate, injunctive relief shall also include requiring the provision of an auxiliary aid or service, modification of a policy, or provision of alternative methods, to the extent required by the Act or this part.

§ 36.502 Investigations and compliance reviews.

  • (a) The Attorney General shall investigate alleged violations of the Act or this part.
  • (b) Any individual who believes that he or she or a specific class of persons has been subjected to discrimination prohibited by the Act or this part may request the Department to institute an investigation.
  • (c) Where the Attorney General has reason to believe that there may be a violation of this part, he or she may initiate a compliance review.

§ 36.503 Suit by the Attorney General.

Following a compliance review or investigation under § 36.502, or at any other time in his or her discretion, the Attorney General may commence a civil action in any appropriate United States district court if the Attorney General has reasonable cause to believe that –

  • (a) Any person or group of persons is engaged in a pattern or practice of discrimination in violation of the Act or this part; or
  • (b) Any person or group of persons has been discriminated against in violation of the Act or this part and the discrimination raises an issue of general public importance.

§ 36.504 Relief.

  • (a) Authority of court. In a civil action under § 36.503, the court –
    • (1) May grant any equitable relief that such court considers to be appropriate, including, to the extent required by the Act or this part –
      • (i) Granting temporary, preliminary, or permanent relief;
      • (ii) Providing an auxiliary aid or service, modification of policy, practice, or procedure, or alternative method; and
      • (iii) Making facilities readily accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities;
    • (2) May award other relief as the court considers to be appropriate, including monetary damages to persons aggrieved when requested by the Attorney General; and
    • (3) May, to vindicate the public interest, assess a civil penalty against the entity in an amount
      • (i) Not exceeding $50,000 for a first violation; and
      • (ii) Not exceeding $100,000 for any subsequent violation.
  • (b) Single violation. For purposes of paragraph (a) (3) of this section, in determining whether a first or subsequent violation has occurred, a determination in a single action, by judgment or settlement, that the covered entity has engaged in more than one discriminatory act shall be counted as a single violation.
  • (c) Punitive damages. For purposes of paragraph (a)(2) of this section, the terms "monetary damages" and "such other relief" do not include punitive damages.
  • (d) Judicial consideration. In a civil action under § 36.503, the court, when considering what amount of civil penalty, if any, is appropriate, shall give consideration to any good faith effort or attempt to comply with this part by the entity. In evaluating good faith, the court shall consider, among other factors it deems relevant, whether the entity could have reasonably anticipated the need for an appropriate type of auxiliary aid needed to accommodate the unique needs of a particular individual with a disability.

§ 36.505 Attorneys fees.

In any action or administrative proceeding commenced pursuant to the Act or this part, the court or agency, in its discretion, may allow the prevailing party, other than the United States, a reasonable attorney´s fee, including litigation expenses, and costs, and the United States shall be liable for the foregoing the same as a private individual.

§ 36.506 Alternative means of dispute resolution.

Where appropriate and to the extent authorized by law, the use of alternative means of dispute resolution, including settlement negotiations, conciliation, facilitation, mediation, factfinding, minitrials, and arbitration, is encouraged to resolve disputes arising under the Act and this part.

§ 36.507 Effect of unavailability of technical assistance.

A public accommodation or other private entity shall not be excused from compliance with the requirements of this part because of any failure to receive technical assistance, including any failure in the development or dissemination of any technical assistance manual authorized by the Act.

§ 36.508 Effective date.

  • (a) General. Except as otherwise provided in this section and in this part, this part shall become effective on January 26, 1992.
  • (b) Civil actions. Except for any civil action brought for a violation of section 303 of the Act, no civil action shall be brought for any act or omission described in section 302 of the Act that occurs –
    • (1) Before July 26, 1992, against businesses with 25 or fewer employees and gross receipts of $1,000,000 or less.
    • (2) Before January 26, 1993, against businesses with 10 or fewer employees and gross receipts of $500,000 or less.
  • (c) Transportation services provided by public accommodations. Newly purchased or leased vehicles required to be accessible by § 36.310 must be readily accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities, including individuals who use wheelchairs, if the solicitation for the vehicle is made after August 25, 1990.

§§ 36.509 – 36.599 [Reserved]

Subpart F – Certification of State Laws or Local Building Codes

§ 36.601 Definitions.

Assistant Attorney General means the Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights or his or her designee.

Certification of equivalency means a final certification that a code meets or exceeds the minimum requirements of title III of the Act for accessibility and usability of facilities covered by that title.

Code means a State law or local building code or similar ordinance, or part thereof, that establishes accessibility requirements.

Model code means a nationally recognized document developed by a private entity for use by State or local jurisdictions in developing codes as defined in this section. A model code is intended for incorporation by reference or adoption in whole or in part, with or without amendment, by State or local jurisdictions.

Preliminary determination of equivalency means a preliminary determination that a code appears to meet or exceed the minimum requirements of title III of the Act for accessibility and usability of facilities covered by that title.

Submitting official means the State or local official who –

  • (1) Has principal responsibility for administration of a code, or is authorized to submit a code on behalf of a jurisdiction; and
  • (2) Files a request for certification under this subpart.

§ 36.602 General rule.

On the application of a State or local government, the Assistant Attorney General may certify that a code meets or exceeds the minimum requirements of the Act for the accessibility and usability of places of public accommodation and commercial facilities under this part by issuing a certification of equivalency. At any enforcement proceeding under title III of the Act, such certification shall be rebuttable evidence that such State law or local ordinance does meet or exceed the minimum requirements of title III.

§ 36.603 Preliminary determination. (Redesignated from Section 36.604)

Upon receipt and review of all information relevant to a request filed by a submitting official for certification of a code, and after consultation with the Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board, the Assistant Attorney General shall make a preliminary determination of equivalency or a preliminary determination to deny certification.

§ 36.604 Procedure following preliminary determination of equivalency. (Redesignated from Section 36.605)

  • (a) If the Assistant Attorney General makes a preliminary determination of equivalency under § 36.603, he or she shall inform the submitting official, in writing, of that preliminary determination. The Assistant Attorney General also shall –
    • (1) Publish a notice in the Federal Register that advises the public of the preliminary determination of equivalency with respect to the particular code, and invite interested persons and organizations, including individuals with disabilities, during a period of at least 60 days following publication of the notice, to file written comments relevant to whether a final certification of equivalency should be issued;
    • (2) After considering the information received in response to the notice described in paragraph (a) of this section, and after publishing a separate notice in the Federal Register, hold an informal hearing, in the State or local jurisdiction charged with administration and enforcement of the code, at which interested individuals, including individuals with disabilities, are provided an opportunity to express their views with respect to the preliminary determination of equivalency; and
  • (b) The Assistant Attorney General, after consultation with the Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board and consideration of the materials and information submitted pursuant to this section, as well as information provided previously by the submitting official, shall issue either a certification of equivalency or a final determination to deny the request for certification. The Assistant Attorney General shall publish notice of the certification of equivalency or denial of certification in the Federal Register.

§ 36.605 Procedure following preliminary denial of certification. (Redesignated from 35.606)

  • (a) If the Assistant Attorney General makes a preliminary determination to deny certification of a code under § 36.603, he or she shall notify the submitting official of the determination.
  • (b) The Assistant Attorney General shall allow the submitting official not less than 15 days to submit data, views, and arguments in opposition to the preliminary determination to deny certification. If the submitting official does not submit materials, the Assistant Attorney General shall not be required to take any further action. If the submitting official submits materials, the Assistant Attorney General shall evaluate those materials and any other relevant information. After evaluation of any newly submitted materials, the Assistant Attorney General shall make either a final denial of certification or a preliminary determination of equivalency.

§ 36.606 Effect of certification. (Redesignated from 35.607)

  • (a)
    • (1) A certification shall be considered a certification of equivalency only with respect to those features or elements that are both covered by the certified code and addressed by the standards against which equivalency is measured.
    • (2) For example, if certain equipment is not covered by the code, the determination of equivalency cannot be used as evidence with respect to the question of whether equipment in a building built according to the code satisfies the Act´s requirements with respect to such equipment. By the same token, certification would not be relevant to construction of a facility for children, if the regulations against which equivalency is measured do not address children´s facilities.
  • (b) A certification of equivalency is effective only with respect to the particular edition of the code for which certification is granted. Any amendments or other changes to the code after the date of the certified edition are not considered part of the certification.
  • (c) A submitting official may reapply for certification of amendments or other changes to a code that has already received certification.
  • (d) When the standards of the Act against which a code is deemed equivalent are revised or amended substantially, a certification of equivalency issued under the preexisting standards is no longer effective, as of the date the revised standards take effect. However, construction in compliance with a certified code during the period when a certification of equivalency was effective shall be considered rebuttable evidence of compliance with the Standards then in effect as to those elements of buildings and facilities that comply with the certified code. A submitting official may reapply for certification pursuant to the Act´s revised standards, and, to the extent possible, priority will be afforded the request in the review process.

§ 36.607 Guidance concerning model codes. (Redesignated from section 36.608)

Upon application by an authorized representative of a private entity responsible for developing a model code, the Assistant Attorney General may review the relevant model code and issue guidance concerning whether and in what respects the model code is consistent with the minimum requirements of the Act for the accessibility and usability of places of public accommodation and commercial facilities under this part.

 



ADA Home Page | Regulation Home Page

 

last updated, March 7, 2012