by Brianna Crandall — February 10, 2017 — The Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM) applauds the introduction of H.R. 620, ADA Education and Reform Act of 2017 to Congress by Representatives Ted Poe, Scott Peters, Ken Calvert, Jackie Speier, Michael Conaway, and Ami Bera. The bipartisan legislation addresses an unintended consequence of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) — the practice by certain attorneys of filing “drive-by” lawsuits with the primary objective being a monetary judgement, not a “fix” to a barrier to access, explains IREM.
IREM, an international affiliate of the National Association of Realtors that has served both the multifamily and commercial sectors since 1933, is a member of a national coalition urging congress to reform the ADA to include a “notice and cure” provision. This provision would allow a business owner the opportunity to rectify a violation within a reasonable amount of time before being threatened with a costly lawsuit or a demand letter for a monetary settlement.
The organization says that H.R. 620 is a common-sense bill that will strengthen the ADA and will provide IREM members a reasonable time period to make necessary corrections and updates to their properties to ensure they are fully accessible to everyone — and IREM strongly supports it.
Michael Lanning, CPM, 2017 IREM president and senior vice president, Cushman & Wakefield, AMO, stated:
IREM and its members commit to a high level of ethical standards, and, therefore, we strongly support the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and its compliance. We also enthusiastically support the ADA Education and Reform Act and the “notice and cure” provision, as it protects our members from becoming targets of “drive-by” lawsuits and demand letters that can be very costly with no due recourse. This bill does not weaken the ADA; it strengthens and restores its original goal of providing accessibility to all people.
On January 25th, IREM sent Rep. Poe and the cosponsors a letter thanking them for their support of this important reform. For more information about IREM and its 2017 Public Policy Priorities (click on link after first paragraph), visit the IREM Web site.