SCOTUS rejects pizza delivery company's appeal over web and mobile app accessibility

Supreme Court allows blind people to sue retailers if their websites are not accessible

The decision not to review the case is a victory for disability advocates, who argue that businesses must comply with Americans with Disabilities Act regulations and be accessible to people with visual or other impairments.

This typically means graphics and embedded hyperlinks must include alternative text, a description of the image that appears when a cursor floats over it or screen-reading software detects it, allowing blind people to order through it.

"For screen-reading software to function, the information on a website or on a mobile application must be capable of being rendered into text", Robles' attorneys said regarding his inability to order online.

However, owners and operators of public accommodations can take solace in the fact that, while the Court's refusal to hear this case will not cause website accessibility claims to cease, we should not see an increase in such cases.

The Ninth US Circuit Court of Appeals went in favor of Robles and ruled that the "alleged inaccessibility of Domino's website and app impedes access to the goods and services of its physical pizza franchises-which are places of public accommodation". The case is Domino's Pizza, LLC v. Guillermo Robles.

In January the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that retailers must make online services open and operative for those with disabilities and the decision Monday upholds that decision and sends the case forward for trial, according to USA Today. Domino's website and mobile app lacked the proper labeling for this accessibility program to be able to function.

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The action was originally initiated by Guillermo Robles, a blind individual who told U.S. District Court in California that Domino's website failed to let him use his mobile phone screen-reader to order pizza from the chain, which he contended violated federal laws created to protect the disabled. What matters was the "combined means of access to those goods or services", executives said.

The Supreme Court may still take up the case at a later date, but for now, Domino's will have to face Robles in a lower court.

7 denied Domino's petition to overturn a lower court ruling that said the pizza delivery company was responsible for making sure people with disabilities could order from its site. "And Domino's provides some discounts exclusively online".

"ADA litigation has become nearly as universal as apps themselves", the U.S. Chamber of Commerce argued in a brief backing the Domino's appeal.

Domino's says more than 2,250 federal lawsuits were filed over website access in 2018, nearly triple the number from 2017.

Understand increasingly: A visually impaired man couldn't organization pizza from Domino's.

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