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Suggested Citation:"CONTENTS." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Impacts of the Americans with Disabilities Act on Transit Agency Liability. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25329.
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CONTENTS I. INTRODUCTION, 3 II. OVERVIEW, PURPOSES, AND FIVE TITLES OF THE ADA, 4 III. THE ADA AMENDMENTS ACT OF 2008 AND ITS IMPACT, 5 A. Congressional Findings in and Purposes of the ADAAA, 5 B. Specific Amendments of the ADA, 6 IV. TITLE I OF THE ADA AND EMPLOYMENT DISCRIMINATION, 7 A. A Transit Agency as a Covered Entity, 7 B. Definition of Disability Under the ADA, 8 C. A Qualified Individual Under the ADA, 8 D. A Disability That Substantially Limits a Major Life Activity, 10 E. Being Regarded as Having a Disability, 11 F. Reasonable Accommodations for Employees with Disabilities, 11 G. Use of Medical Inquiries and Examinations, 12 H. Use of Illegal Drugs or Use of Alcohol in the Workplace, 13 I. Use of Qualifying Standards, Tests, or Selective Criteria, 13 J. Whether States and State Agencies Have Immunity to Title I Claims, 13 K. Enforcement of Title I of the ADA, 14 V. TITLE II OF THE ADA AND DISCRIMINATION BY PUBLIC ENTITIES, 15 A. Introduction, 15 B. Regulatory Jurisdiction of Title II, 16 C. FTA Guidance on Title II, 17 D. Prohibition of Discriminatory Practices, 17 E. Requirement that an Individual Establish that He or She Has a Disability, 18 F. General Accessibility Requirements Under Title II, 18 G. Title II, Public Entities, and Service Animals, 22 H. Accessibility of a Transportation Program or Service in Its Entirety, 23 I. Emergency Preparedness, 23 J. Claims Against Transit Agencies for Alleged Violations of Title II, 24 VI. REQUIREMENTS FOR TRANSPORTATION FACILITIES UNDER TITLE II OF THE ADA, 24 A. ADA Standards for Transportation Facilities, 24 B. Construction of New Transportation Facilities, 24 C. Alterations of Existing Facilities, 25 D. Claims Arising out of Alleged Inaccessible Facilities, 25 E. New and Existing Stations for Use in Intercity or Commuter Rail Transportation, 26 F. Accessibility of Elevators, 27 G. Accessibility of Platforms, 28 H. Accessibility of Key Stations, 29 I. Programs and Activities in Existing Facilities, 30 VII. REQUIREMENTS FOR FIXED ROUTE SERVICE UNDER THE ADA, 30 A. Accessibility Issues Specific to Fixed Route Service, 30 B. Acquisition of ADA-Compliant Vehicles for Fixed Route Service, 31 C. Rapid and Light Rail Vehicles, 32 D. Commuter Rail Vehicles, 32 E. Purchase or Lease of New Rail Passenger Cars for Intercity Rail Transportation, 32 F. One-Car-Per-Train Accessibility, 32 G. Equivalent Facilitation, 33 H. Effect of the ADA on Placement and Location of Transit Stops, 33 I. Transit Agencies’ Claims or Cases Alleging that Their Fixed Route Service Violated the ADA, 33 VIII. PARATRANSIT SERVICE REQUIREMENTS UNDER TITLE II OF THE ADA, 34 A. ADA Requirements Applicable to Paratransit Service, 34 B. Regulations Applicable to Paratransit Service, 34 C. Meaning of “Origin-to Destination” Paratransit Service, 35 D. Eligibility for Paratransit Service Under the ADA, 36 E. Effect of Temporary or Episodic Disability on Eligibility for Paratransit, 37 F. Whether Paratransit Eligibility Is Restricted When a Transit Stop or Facility Is Accessible via a Network of Streets, 37 G. Transit Agencies’ Approaches to Determining Eligibility, 38 H. Paratransit Appeal Process for Denials of Eligibility, 38 I. Claims Alleging that a Transit Agency’s Paratransit Service Violated the ADA, 38 IX. DEMAND RESPONSIVE SERVICE UNDER TITLE II OF THE ADA, 44 A. Section 12144 of the ADA, 44 B. Regulations Applicable to Demand Responsive Service, 44 C. Interpretation of Equivalent Service in the Context of Demand Responsive Service, 44 D. Transit Agencies’ Responses to the Survey, 45 X. ADMINISTRATIVE AND JUDICIAL ENFORCEMENT OF TITLE II OF THE ADA, 45 A. FTA Oversight, Complaints, and Monitoring, 45 B. Triennial Reviews, 45 C. Private Right of Action Under Title II of the ADA, 46 D. Stating a Claim Under Title II, 47 E. Standing, 47 F. Class Actions Under the ADA Against Transit Agencies, 48 G. Liability for Compensatory Damages for Intentional Violations of the ADA, 50 H. Compensatory Damages for Violations of the ADA Because of Deliberate Indifference, 50 I. Applicability of 42 U.S.C. § 1983 to ADA Claims, 52 J. Respondeat Superior Liability Under the ADA, 53 K. Immunity of a State or State Agency for Damages for Violations of Title II, 53 L. Statute of Limitations, 55 M. Attorney’s Fees, 55 XI. TITLE III AND DISCRIMINATION IN PUBLIC ACCOMMODATIONS, 56 A. Prohibition of Discrimination by Places of Public Accommodation, 56 B. What Constitutes Discriminatory Action Under Title III, 56 C. Transportation Services Subject to Title III, 57 D. Title III and Taxis, Transportation Network Companies, and Microtransit, 57 E. Investigations and Compliance Reviews by the Attorney General, 59 F. Private Actions Under Title III, 59 G. Injunctive Relief, 59 H. Attorney’s Fees, 59 XII. RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE ADA AND THE CIVIL RIGHTS LAWS, 60 A. Claims Against Transit Agencies for Disparate Impact and Disparate Treatment, 60 B. The ADA as a Civil Rights Statute, 60 C. Relationship of Title I of the ADA and the Civil Rights Act, 61 D. Relationship of Title II of the ADA and the Civil Rights Act, 62 E. Relationship Between Title III of the ADA and the Civil Rights Act, 63 XIII. LIABILITY OF TRANSIT AGENCIES IN TORT FOR CLAIMS BY INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABILITIES, 64 XIV. SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS, 64 APPENDIX D - TRANSIT AGENCIES’ POLICIES, PROCEDURES, AND OTHER MATERIALS, 68

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TRB's Transit Cooperative Research Program (TCRP) Legal Research Digest 54: Impacts of the Americans with Disabilities Act on Transit Agency Liability explores the types of Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements and legal claims against transit agencies. The ADA has transformed U.S. transit agencies, which now have sophis­ticated programs to address a wide variety of accessibility goals in such areas as the design of transit stations, bus and rail vehicle design, media stop announcements, para­transit programs, website design and content, and many other tools that address ADA requirements. This research presents an assessment of challenges in implementing the ADA from the perspective of transit operators. Additionally, this digest summarizes relevant guidance from the U.S. Federal Transit Administration. Download the following appendix that accompanies the report:

  • Appendix D: Transit Agencies' Policies, Procedures, and Other Materials
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