Category Archives: Laws

9 months ago Legal Fees , Laws

Serving Legal Papers on an Individual: Everything to Know

The United States racks up more than 40 million lawsuits every year. Frivolous or practical, people find a reason to remain in conflict with one another.

Sometimes, serving legal papers is the right route to resolving issues.

People go to court for many reasons; if you haven’t guessed it already, money is the number one motivator. But fighting broken contracts, protecting property, and recovering damages rank high on the list.

It’s unfortunate that the words of people are no longer their bond. But suing helps you protect yourself and your interests.

If you’re looking for the proper way to give someone legal notice, you need to read this to learn everything about serving legal papers.

Serving Legal Papers Start With the Right Process Server

There are certain upfront restrictions involved when you decide to serve someone legal papers. The first is age and responsibility.

You must be 18 years of age or older to serve someone.

The individual serving the notice cannot have a personal interest or stake in the case. Meaning, by law, they cannot be the petitioner or respondent. If you’re responsible for setting the case in motion, you don’t have the legal authority to serve.

However, a relative, coworker, or friend could serve in your place if the courts approve. They must meet all the required restrictions.

If this is your first time serving, you should lean towards securing professional help. Hire a process server. A process server does just that—serve legal documents to help set the process in motion.

They also provide evidence of served papers via an affidavit of service. This protects you from missing steps required by law in the serving process. Doing so could prolong it.

Knowing Who to Serve

Cases vary. In some instances, you may need to serve one individual, while in others, you’re required to serve multiple people.

Here’s how it works:

  • Suing one person – Serve one person
  • Suing multiple people – Serve each individual person
  • Suing a shady landlord – Serve the property owner
  • Suing a business – Serve a partner in the business
  • Suing a large corporation – Serve an officer
  • Suing your city – Serve your city’s clerk

Keep in mind: the respondent must reside in the same state you’re filing. But in some cases, there are exceptions; for example, if you’re suing your landlord but he or she lives outside of the state.

Timing and Location

Time is always a factor in legal proceedings. Make sure you know your state’s deadlines on serving papers.

A professional process server should deliver papers to your respondent within five to seven days. They don’t serve on Sundays, so keep this mind when you’re following your state’s regulations.

Time also depends on the accuracy of the location. You can’t serve papers if you don’t have a proper location for your respondent. Lock that down right away.

If you cannot secure a location for them, you must provide that information to a judge. A judge may require details of every date and address of each attempt to reach the respondent.

Serve Papers

Serving legal papers is usually a last resort. But sometimes, it’s the best way to resolve conflict.

Before you declare yourself a petitioner, secure a reliable server. Then follow through, according to your state’s guidelines.

Need more expert advice? Read more here to see how we can help you with your lifestyle situation.

9 months ago Laws

Get Organized: The Best Law Practice Management Software

Did you know that there are over 1 million lawyers in the United States? With so many attorneys, the competition is pretty high.

One of the best ways to stand out from the competition is to stay organized. Have you been looking to streamline your law firm operations? You’re in the right place!

Keep reading to learn the best law practice management software available.

Best Law Practice Management Software

If you’re currently running a law firm, you’ll probably agree that it’s not the easiest task around. You have different things to keep in order, from court documents for multiple cases to managing different cases, as well to accounting.

Thanks to technology, you can streamline many of your job tasks and keep yourself and your firm in order.

Beyond Counsel offers affordable monthly options based on your firm’s needs. Their goal is to bring order to any chaos your law firm might be experiencing at the moment. You also have the ability to create and produce documents that you need without frustration and headaches.

They help law firms that specialize in estate planning and truly work to make their lives easier and their firm run smoothly. Part of the “why” behind their company is to avoid lawyers from burning out and exhausting themselves.


This legal practice management software is meant for solo legal practitioners or for small law firms. It’s a great option because it can be customized to fit your needs. No matter the specialty, it can be personalized.

Different things you can get organized with this option include legal workflow processing based on court rules, billing and invoicing, legal calendaring, and payroll processing.


This software option offers a secure client portal to keep everything in order. You also have the ability to send messages to your staff or clients through different communication tools that are available.

A bonus is your clients can get assistance with using their portal if they need it, thanks to the certified consultants available through MyCase.


This software includes multiple things to keep you organized. You have court docketing, budgeting capability, time tracking, expense tracking, document assembly, and legal calendaring available to use. There’s also contingency analysis and disposition available, along with billing analysis and disposition.

You also have the option to add other modules if you need them. Extras you can add include electronic billing to making billing easier or Westlaw legal calendaring if you prefer.

Hello Organization

Once you find and choose the perfect law practice management software for your firm, you’ll be able to get everything organized and take some stress off your shoulders. You’ll be able to manage your client’s cases and access their records without wasting any time or searching through mountains of paperwork.

Don’t forget to bookmark our site to never miss any of our latest posts to help you with all things legal!


Are monopolies lawful? Can you combat them in court?

In this heightened age of capitalism, it’s easy to believe that everything is based on competition and that there’s no limit of what an individual or a small company can achieve as long as they can provide value to the market.

But what exactly is the value? How do we measure it? Through the pricing? The number of problems solved? Or through just sheer emotion and the way we feel after using a specific product or service?

The thing is that value is a very subjective thing, it doesn’t really have a universal explanation and can’t be measured based on pure logic. It needs to take the subjective impact it has on its consumers. Only after that can it be taken into account and compared to the rest of the world in a sense.

But no matter what type of product is created nowadays, we always hear a large tech or other corporation mimic it and “monopolize” it. Take for example the search engine “industry”. No matter how much any new service may try to enter the market, they will be met with a brick wall called Google.

Nobody is complaining that Google is the most used service right? But what if we look at the market share of this tech sector? Can you name a few search engines off the top of your head? Ok, Bing and DuckDuckGo, but those are slowly dying as we speak, and the companies that operate them don’t really believe in their success in the future, and neither do the few people that use them.

In this sense we can easily say that Google has a monopoly over the search engine sector, right? But does the government or a law firm have the capability, or the authority to challenge it? In a sense, yes, yes it does, but it will be quite hard to outline the clear signs of monopolies.

You see, a monopoly is defined not by how much market share a particular brand holds in a specific segment, but how much they try and disrupt competition.

One example that we have about just pure, blatant monopoly is Regular Oil way back in the past. The company was purposely lowering their prices to a point where they were losing money, as long as they could limit that income for new competitors.

It’s not like Google is lowering its prices or anything, right? Well, because it doesn’t have anything to sell on a B2C basis, it’s more B2B.

However, on that B2B basis, it does indeed have the opportunity to offer the best deals should it decide to. You see, the competition that Google has right now is not “alarming for them, meaning that they don’t have to worry about lowering prices or disrupting the competition in any way. This is why no lawyer or government can challenge them in terms of antitrust law.

But as soon as a new search engine appears that does indeed offer a lot of competition and prices move, it may be perceived as a method for disrupting the competitor’s business, and can be tried in court. 

This is a very basic explanation of how one can just spot a monopoly. Combatting one is a completely different topic, and is usually the government’s job.

What if the government owns the monopoly?

Combatting a privatized monopoly in the 21st century is not a hard process, as in most cases lawyers from the individual are not required. The only thing that can be done is the supply of information to relevant agencies such as the DOJ in the United States, which will then take care of the issue.

But what can one do when the government itself is the owner of the monopoly? Do they have the right to it? Well, they are the law, so why wouldn’t they, right? No, not really.

In most cases, one may believe that governments own monopolies in manufacturing industries. Things such as natural resources, consumer goods, etc. But in some countries, governments even control several service segments.

One example of a government-held monopoly is in Finland, of all places, and most of the Nordic countries as well.

The governments in these countries refuse to privatize the gaming sector, thus narrowing it down to one or two companies that are SOEs( State Owned Enterprises).

How does one combat this?

Well, for one, it needs to be decided if the monopoly is unlawful in the sense that, the end customer is getting much less value than he or she is paying for.

In the case of government-held monopolies, this is rarely the case, as the government is usually not oriented on profit as much as a private company would be.

But the Nordics are a completely different example as they monopolize the gaming industry to “get rid of it”.

But, we all know that getting rid of an industry is impossible simply through limiting its supply. The only thing that can be done through this just decreases the number of people that openly use the product, while in reality, the number remains the same as people find “illegal” means to access the product.

This is exactly the case in Northern Europe, according to Сasinopånett website, a local gaming news outlet.

Experts from the outlet say that people use untraceable currencies in order to surpass the country’s firewall, and access online methods of gaming as local, monopolized services are simply too taxing. This means that by decreasing the value of the product, the government is hoping to remove the sector completely when in reality, they are subjecting their users to even more risk than a privatized company would.

The only way to combat these monopolies is through sheer democracy, and the folks in Finland have already started.

If you want a very detailed explanation of the process, you can follow this link and see the outlet’s report. But, in short, it’s just the beginning of the process.

First is the task of determining that it’s an issue, which means surveys on surveys. Once the surveys show a majority recognizing it as a current or potential problem, it could be used as data to draft a bill in parliament. Naturally, though, it will have to be done through an opposition party, as the majority would never back such a thing.

Once the bill is drafted, it needs to be promoted across the nation, to a point where a referendum will have to be held for its approval. At that moment, the citizens have much more power than the lawmakers, therefore potentially making them into lawmakers.

This is the most democratic way of achieving justice, but it most certainly isn’t an easy way.

Therefore, if you are an owner of a small business, and find yourself at a disadvantage from a monopoly, make sure you identify it first before you draft a complaint to the government.

If it is a government-held monopoly, however, it’s best to inform research firms about it, or hire lawyers that are experts in antitrust law. Popularising the problem is the only way through that mess at this point in time.

9 months ago Laws

Attorney Funding: A Brief Guide to the Fundamentals

A lawyer knows that growing his or her business in the law industry is quite tricky without the proper financial stability. The expenses are always too high, and it takes years to get the payouts for the settlements. Attorney funding, also popularly called the law firm loan or the lawyer funding, will help your law firm to keep going as the case gets solved. This financial arrangement helps your attorney firm to grow and get the best benefits in the future as well. This financing is provided by the lawyers, and for lawyers, to have access to capital, helpful to run law firm.

This legal funding will help the attorneys to run their operations smoothly, as it becomes difficult in some situations to continue without proper funding.

The attorney funding is made as per the needs of attorney to fit their capital needs and budget. Various companies offer legal funding solutions to help the law firms to get access to capital so that they can build more cases without waiting for the current one to resolve or settle. There are various types of law funding options available in the market as like the voucher funding, cost financing, attorney law of credit, and many more.

Difference between the law firm funding and traditional funding

Several law firms still approach local or national financial institutions for capital. These banks will give the business loan or the Line of credit (LOC). But, the problem with traditional banking is two-folded. They do not consider the intricacies that are involved in the legal practice, and they do not offer enough funds that are required.

Besides, if your law firm is not having good terms with the bank, you have to guarantee the finances personally. This means that you have to risk the capital you have earned to help to secure money. But, several reputed funding providers provide the law firm loan depending upon the current case portfolio of the attorney. The funding agreements are non-recourse, and thus, you do not have to be the guarantee of the money.

Why should you apply for legal law funding?

The law firm funding or attorney funding is very important for capitalizing the costs that are associated with legal cases. This law funding is crucial for those who are involved in complicated legal settlements that are difficult to resolve. The attorney funding will help you as the lawyer to get sufficient cash so that you can produce the strongest arguments for the clients, studies, and can make the required expenses.

The legal law firm funding is made keeping in mind the requirement of the customers. The professionals understand the time delay in case of acquiring traditional loans. Thus, they provide the attorney funding that is much more favorable and time saving for the clients. The loan approval process is quite easy and once the loan gets approved, the law firm funding provider will receive some amount of the future receivable and will provide the cash or LOC (Line of credit). The providers will give the funds as soon as possible without any delay.

9 months ago Laws

Can You Challenge or Appeal a Restraining Order in PA?

Yes. If a restraining order has been entered against you in Pennsylvania, there is something you can do about it. Let’s review the types of restraining orders in Pennsylvania.

Types of Restraining Orders in Pennsylvania

Protection from Abuse Order

Depending on what you have been accused of, there are a variety of protective orders a judge could issue against you. The most commonly issued protective order is a Protection from Abuse (PFA) order. 

PFA orders can only be issued when there is a domestic relationship between the alleged victim and abuser. These orders follow two stages:

  1. A Temporary Protection Order (TPO) goes into effect when someone formally accuses you of domestic violence and asks a court for protection. It only lasts 10 days or until a hearing is held to decide if the order is legally justified.
  2. A Final Protection Order (FPO) takes effect after a judge hears the arguments for and against a restraining order and rules to issue one. This order initially lasts three years but can be extended indefinitely in three-year increments at a judge’s discretion.

What is the difference between a PFA and a Restraining Order?

“Restraining order” is just a generic term for a variety of court orders forbidding contact with an alleged victim of stalking, domestic violence, sexual assault, and similar crimes. 

In Pennsylvania, a PFA order is a specific type of restraining order. PFA stands for protection from abuse and these orders only apply when there is a domestic relationship between the victim and offender, such as husband/wife or child/parent.

There are three types of restraining orders in Pennsylvania:

  • Protection from Abuse Order
  • Sexual Violence Protection Order
  • Protection from Intimidation Order

Does a restraining order go on your criminal record?

Restraining orders are not criminal convictions. They are civil orders, and like other family law matters, the specifics of the complaint are not easily accessible to the public. 

There is a central database available to Pennsylvania courts and Law Enforcement that lists active restraining orders, but the order itself will not appear in simple background checks or criminal history checks. 

If you hold or are applying for a job with a federal agency (Department of Defense, FBI, DEA, etc) that requires a security clearance, the restraining order will be seen and could result in a revocation or denial of security clearance in certain circumstances. 

Other possible negative consequences of a restraining order are:

  • Lost child custody rights
  • Loss of professional licensing
  • Loss of firearm rights
  • Criminal charges, if you violate a restraining order

How Can You Challenge a PFA Restraining Order in PA?

First, Defend Against the Entry of a Final PFA Order

Your first course of action is to appear at the hearing when it is scheduled in the Court of Common Pleas. The initial restraining order is only temporary (TPO) and the person seeking a restraining order against you must convince the judge to make it permanent. It is wise to retain an attorney to help you explain to the judge what happened if your version of events is different.

Statistics available at the PA Courts website indicate that after a TPO is entered:

  • 30% of the time, Plaintiff/Petitioner to fail to appear at the hearing – no FPO
  • 21% of the time, Plaintiff withdrew the petition – no FPO
  • 20% of the time, the parties come to an agreement – no FPO
  • 6% of the time, the TPO is dismissed and no FPO is entered
  • 5% of the time, the judge does not enter an FPO after the hearing

When a TPO is entered, an FPO is thereafter entered about 18% of the time. An attorney will almost certainly improve your chances further.

Second, File a Motion for Reconsideration or an Appeal

If the judge enters a final PFA and you believe that is an error, you have two options:

  • File a Motion for Reconsideration with the judge who entered it;
  • File an appeal with the Superior Court of PA

You need not file a Motion for Reconsideration prior to filing an appeal – you can appeal immediately if you wish.

Motion for Reconsideration of the FPO

A motion for reconsideration must be filed within 10 days from the entry of an FPO. In your motion you will argue that the judge made a mistake. If the judge denies your motion, you have the option of filing appeal.

Appeal the Entry of an FPO

An appeal of an FPO is made to the Superior Court of PA. A Notice of Appeal must be filed with the prothonotary of that court within 30 days of the entry of the FPO. A legal brief and other documents must also be filed according to the procedural rules of the court.  In your brief, you must argue to that court that the judge either made a mistake of law, a mistake of fact, or both.

Third, the FPO Expires in 3 years

The plaintiff has the option of filing a motion to renew the FPO. You will get notice of that and have another opportunity to argue against it.  You may prevail, and if you do not, you have the same options available to you as with the initial entry of the FPO.

About the Author

Veronica Baxter is a writer, blogger, and legal assistant operating out of the greater Philadelphia area. She frequently works for busy Philadelphia appeals attorney Todd Mosser, Esq.

9 months ago Fraud , Laws

All the information you ever needed about healthcare fraud and the regulations

There are several key definitions and various rules that you need to keep in mind regarding healthcare malpractices and other billing offenses. It is in your best interest to be aware and informed about the various frauds and abuses, along with the legal penalties that include the Anti-kickback Statute and the False-Claims Act. For more information, get in touch with The Healthcare Fraud Group

Here are all the main types of healthcare fraud that are prevalent globally,

  • Submission of falsified claim documents and misrepresentation of health issues, procedures performed and treatment bills to acquire a reimbursement from an insurance provider or person
  • Solicitation, receiving and offering of remuneration for referrals with the sole purpose of monetary gains
  • Allowing for various prohibited referrals with respect to special health services

There are multiple instances of healthcare abuse as well that includes falsification of claims and bills in case of a no-show for an appointment, billing for services that weren’t furnished as well submitting a complex application for higher reimbursement. 

What is the problem?

The greater the extent of healthcare abuse, the higher is the unnecessary cost that is generated for an individual or the health insurance service provider. Keep in mind that with medical abuse, there are various problems, and the major one is the prevention of patients from receiving industry standard and high-quality treatment and medically necessary procedures

What are the federal laws and acts in place?

Healthcare abuse results in severe and crippling criminal and civil liabilities. Federal policymakers have come up with the following regulations to keep the medical and healthcare abuse in check. Let us have a look at them. 

The False Claims Act

This federal law makes provisions for a civil liability case on an individual or organization that submits a false or fraudulent claim document with the sole purpose of generating revenue. There is no need to prove specific intent for the person/s committing the fraud. 

The Anti-Kickback Statute

This federal law targets all individuals and groups who pay, receive, and solicit referrals with the sole purpose of generating a kick-back for the services and items offered. 

Law for Physician Self-Referral 

This Federal legislation is all about prohibiting medical practitioners from providing referrals for specific healthcare programs where the provider or a family member is a stakeholder or an owner. 

Keep in mind that there are crippling economic sanctions and penalties as well as provisions for long-term imprisonment if the proof of guilt can be found. 

Steps to combat healthcare fraud

Here are some of the critical steps that if implemented correctly, can help curb out healthcare fraud.

  • Distribution of a code of conduct pertaining to the standard of treatment and policies to the hospitals and medical service providers
  • Addressing the areas under suspicion of potential fraud including the claims management and the financial relationship with the health insurance service providers
  • Presence of a Chief Compliance Officer on the hospital premises at all times to monitor the compliance with the code of conduct
  • Education and training programs for the medical staff
  • Maintenance of an official government process to file complaints and reports by individuals
  • Investigation of problems, claims, and audit by a third-party agency to reduce issues related to healthcare fraud and abuses

By joining forces, together we can curb out the healthcare frauds maligning our medical system. Let us all take the pledge to root out the problem once and for all.

9 months ago Laws

Tips for Locating a Prison, Inmate, or Sex Offender Quickly and Discreetly

A person might have many reasons to want to find a prison, inmate, or sex offender. They could be concerned about a loved one who might be in jail, or trying to get a letter to them. Or they might be trying to keep their family safe from someone who has caused problems for them. Whatever the reason, finding someone among the more than 2 million incarcerated adults can take a little time if you don’t know what resources to use. This is especially true if you wish to do it quickly and discreetly. 

Locating a prison

Locating a prison is fairly easy if you know which state the prison is in. A simple online search will usually do the trick. But if you’d rather see a complete list of all the prisons in a particular state, there’s a more direct way to do so. Go to the government corrections website and choose your state from the drop-down list. You will then be redirected to the state’s department of corrections site, where you can find various information. Each state maintains its own website, though, so the data will be a little different for each one. For example, Alabama’s site allows you to search inmates, view lists of inmates on death row, and see who has recently escaped. This could all be helpful for other searches, but if you’re looking for specific facilities, you’ll have to get a little deeper into the site. For this one, you’ll click the “About ADOC” drop-down menu at the top and select “Facilities.” Then, you’ll be taken to a page of links for all the prisons in the state, along with contact information. 

Locating an inmate

Finding an inmate is a little more difficult than finding a prison. It’s a matter of public record, but you’ll have to have some specific information to pull it up. Just as for other searches, it’s recommended you start first with Google. You might get lucky and find the person in your search because most local newspapers publish arrest records regularly. If nothing pops up there, you’ll have to move on to more specific methods. 

If you know the state the inmate is in, you can go to the state’s correctional facilities website, following the previous instructions. Almost every state has a clear link on the front page to search for an inmate. But some states require you to have an inmate number in addition to a name. If you don’t have this information, you can call the facility and ask. You can usually give them the inmate name and date of birth to find out whether they are there. What you have to keep in mind, though, is that you won’t be able to see a mugshot over the phone, so it’s possible that someone else has the same name and birthdate. 

If you need quick results and would rather skip all the red tape, you can use a much easier way to find an inmate. For example, instead of doing a broad Travis County inmate search, you can simply use a service designed specifically for finding people. In fact, this type of service will give you a lot more information than you can get from any of the other methods. You can find out things such as possible phone numbers, address history, relatives, and public records

Locating a sex offender

The FBI keeps a record of all registered sex offenders on its sex offender website. This works much the same way as the correctional facility database in that you pick your state and go directly to their site. On the state’s site, you can look up sex offenders in a few ways. If you know the person’s name, you can search them with that. You can also search colleges and universities on this site to find out whether sex offenders are on a certain campus. Or you can pull up a map to find the number of offenders in a specific area. If you’re looking for a specific sex offender, the search is much easier. Most state databases have lists of released sex offenders, or you can even call them to find out where they are.

9 months ago Laws

3 Important Things to Know About Foreclosure Law in the United States

Owning a home is a common long-term goal for most Americans. Things can get complicated, though, when financial troubles arise and you can’t pay your lender on time.

After a number of missed payments (or violation of your loan terms), your lender may choose to foreclose your home.

There are some things about foreclosure law you need to keep in mind, but not everybody knows what to consider.

Not sure where to start? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

Let’s take a look at everything you need to know.

1. You Can Negotiate

When a lender begins the foreclosure process (this starts with sending notices), you don’t have to give up all hope. Instead, you can contact them and try to come to a mutual agreement.

You have a few options when it comes to negotiation, too.

You could pay off your missed balance entirely. Or, you could factor in your missed payments into your future payments and start a new payment plan from there.

You’ll never be able to reach this agreement if you don’t contact your lender, though, so make sure you reach out to them if they’ve notified you of their intention to foreclose your home!

2. Laws Vary by State

Foreclosure isn’t the same in every state, and there are often a handful of differences from one state to the other.

The biggest factor to consider is whether your state is considered a judicial state or non-judicial state.

In a judicial state, the court is far more involved in the foreclosure process. Foreclosure in these states functions like a lawsuit in state court in front of a judge.

In a non-judicial state, the court doesn’t supervise the foreclosure. This means that the owner of the property doesn’t need court approval before they sell the property.

Non-judicial state foreclosures aren’t always this straightforward, though.

For a further example, you can see what the guys over at BiggerEquity have to say about the foreclosure process in Maryland (a non-judicial state).

As you can infer, judicial states offer you a better chance of delaying/resolving your foreclosure issue. However, this is only useful if you can develop the means to resolve your missed payments.

3. It Could Affect Your Future Funding

Having your home foreclosed can send a message to lenders that you’re unreliable when it comes to paying back the money you borrow.

As such, lenders like Fannie Mae have a policy that declares seven years pass before you’re able to secure another mortgage loan.

Similarly, a foreclosure will deliver a powerful blow to your credit, which can adversely affect your ability to secure loans from other lenders. Bad credit also comes with a handful of other complications.

Understanding Foreclosure Law Can Seem Difficult

But it doesn’t have to be.

With the above information about foreclosure law in mind, you’ll be well on your way to knowing how to handle the process when the time comes.

Want to learn more legal info that can help you stay prepared for the future? Our blog has plenty of useful info for you to check out today.

9 months ago Laws

Knowing about Accessibility – How to Make a Software Section 508 Compliant?

As you can see, many lawsuits are being filed in relation to accessibility on the web world. So, for all website owners and administrators who are sharing information with the public, it is high time now to ensure conformity with Section 508 of Rehabilitation Act of 1973. One should also take into consideration the American Disabilities Act as well as the WCAG (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines) by the WWW Consortium. In this article, we are trying to discuss in a bit details about accessibility issues and how they relate to your software applications.

With increasing lawsuits against even small businesses to sue their websites which are not ADA compliant, business owners are now scrambling to make their online assets compliant with the Section 508 accessibility requirements. As Google also specified that accessibility is a key concern for search engine ranking also, being compliant become more and more important. There are many public information websites which had to shut down or redirect their traffic to other places due to accessibility issues on their pages. For retain businesses online and e-commerce sites, it could be a devastating experience to shut down due to accessibility noncompliance.

What to do for accessibility?

There is no doubt that the best approach for anyone running a website is to triage a noncompliant situation and come into the track. There are many tools and methods out there for the website and software owners to identify the issues which need immediate attention for improvement to be compliant.

As per the World Wide Web Consortium guideline “Web accessibility is all about the websites, software tools, and related technologies are designed, developed, and procured in a such a way that people with disabilities can also easily use them.” Web accessibility is a broader term which encompasses the needs of people with all kind of disabilities, including visual, auditory, speech, neurological, cognitive, and psychological disabilities.

Accessibility laws

The US Congress passed The Rehabilitation Act in 1973, which further prohibit any discrimination on the basis of disabilities to individuals in all programs related to the federal agencies. The later amendment of Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act adds information and communications technology sector too by mandating those too to be accessible to individuals with disabilities, both for federal employees as well as the public.

In 1990, as the world wide web was fast emerging, US Congress passed another act named as Americans with Disabilities Act or ADA. This is more focused on the civil rights laws, which prohibits any discrimination against the disabled people at all public and private places. This is the reason why both your business and website/software need to be compliant.

Now, there are five distinct sessions or titles under ADA.

# Title 1 deal with the discrimination in terms of employment, and the Human Resources professionals may probably take care of it.

# Titles 3 & 4 of ADA are the ones which focus more on electronic communication, and this is where the website content has to be considered.

If you are planning to open a physical storefront, then Section #3 of the American with Disabilities Act may demand you to maintain some specific accessibility needs so that consumers of all sort can enter your business. One of the most common accessibility requirements you can see everywhere is the need for wheelchair access. All sort of businesses, including commercial real estate needs to ensure that such accessibility compliances are implemented for businesses.

Section 508 Compliance for software

When businesses are developing a software, you have to consider this also the same as above (a virtual doorway) to your business where you need to have wheelchair access and other accessibility features for the disabled. However, when it comes to the technological world of websites and software, the accessibility needs are different. You don’t have to make any accommodations for the physical access there, but need to follow some specific guidelines to ensure flawless virtual access.

The guidelines

The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.1), have three levels of conformance in terms of 508 compliance software and web applications as:

  1. Level A: To be Level A conform, a web page should meet all Level A criteria.
  2. Level AA: For this, web page or software should satisfy all Level A and Level AA criteria.
  3. Level AAA: As above, it should satisfy Level A, Level AA, Level AAA criteria.

Some of the primary rules under Section 508 for software compliance as below

1194.21(a) – While the software is designed to run on any system which has a keyboard as an input device, then all the functions should be executable from the keyboard. So, you need to ensure that there are no such functions which can only be accessed through the mouse.

To test the compliance, you need to test:

  • Installation of the software by using the keyboard only.
  • Perform all primary software tasks using the keyboard.
  • Check the user manual of the product for functionality and ensure that for all functions, there is access through keyboard alone. 

The above the law is only applicable to keyboard-enabled systems only. Another specific software application compliance regulation as below.

1194.21(b) – Any software application should not disable any activated features of other products identified as accessibility features as far as those features are developed according to the industry standards. In simpler terms, the systems or software you use must not disrupt any accessibility features of other products or OS. To determine compliance, you may follow the below steps.

  • Click on Start, and go to Settings and Control Panel. Click on the Accessibility Options and then activate all accessibility features. Ensure that you activate the MouseKeys, StickyKeys, and all other portions which should be working with the open application running.
  • Check the user manual of the software product for accessibility features. Enable all of them if available and make sure that they don’t impact the OS or other applications adversely in terms of accessibility features. 
  • Run the AT with software. Ensure that no AT features are overridden as the product being tested. 

There are many other subsidiary regulations too which the software developers and web applications developers need to be thorough with in order to ensure 508 conformity before you release your software application or website for public access.

9 months ago Laws

An Overview of Federal Laws That Protect Employees

Last year, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission received over 76,000 discrimination claims. So if you’re the victim of workplace discrimination you, unfortunately, aren’t alone.

Want to learn more about your rights but don’t know where to start? We’ve got you covered. Here are the key laws that protect employees from discrimination.

Equal Pay Act of 1963

This act ensures equal pay for men and women performing the same work. This holds for unions as well. It states that if both jobs need the same effort, skill, and responsibility, workers must get paid the same.

Civil Rights Act of 1964

This is one of the first laws that protect employees that prohibits discrimination based on religion, national origin, race, color, or sex. This holds for any businesses, agencies, or unions with more than 15 members. One cannot discriminate with regards to hiring, firing, payment, or employment conditions

If you’re facing discrimination of any of these types, don’t hesitate to get help with a lawsuit. The amount can potentially be life-changing.

Civil Rights Act of 1991

This act states that employers will pay damages when they practice employment discrimination. It also overruled some Supreme Court decisions that made job discrimination lawsuits difficult.

It provides a list of elements needed to prove a disparate impact claim. Juries can award damages in situations of intentional discrimination. It also lets individuals file private suits if retaliated against for filing a claim.

Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009

This is an amendment to the Civil Rights Act of 1964. It modified the statute of limitations for filing pay discrimination lawsuits. The 180-day limit resets with each new discriminatory paycheck issued to the employee.

Rehabilitation Act of 1973

This act prohibits discrimination against qualified individuals with disabilities from getting a job. It applies to all federal government agencies. It also applies to any employers receiving substantial federal contracts or financial assistance.

Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990

This act applies to any business of 15 or more employees. It prevents discrimination against qualified individuals with a disability. These apply to both mental and physical handicaps.

Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967

This act protects those aged 40 and older from age-related employment discrimination. It also set the stage for disparate impact claims, which need proof of an underlying goal of age discrimination. Additionally, a questionnaire about the event in question must be submitted within 60 days, and as long as it is on file, it can be later brought to court.

Finally, it also allows an avenue for filing private suits in cases of retaliation for filing a claim. Additionally, this act provides guidelines for pension and retirement plans.

Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008

This act prevents discrimination based on genetic information. While that may seem like a ways away, with the advent of services like 23 and Me and AncestryDNA, genetic testing is becoming quite popular. This act means that employees can take these without fear of future discrimination.

Now You Know Laws that Protect Employees from Discrimination!

This is just a short list of the top laws that protect employees from discrimination. But the total list of laws is endless. For example, there are acts against pregnancy and military history discrimination, and even for those with “black lung”.

If you have experienced or are currently experiencing workplace discrimination, don’t wait. Get in contact with a lawyer today. And remember to check our blog often for more helpful legal information!


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