RadioShack Sued for Alleged ADA Website Accessibility Violation

On Monday, Windy Lucius filed an Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) complaint against General Wireless Operations Inc., which does business as RadioShack. The plaintiff brought the case seeking, among other things, injunctive relief requiring RadioShack to make its commercial website usable for the visually impaired.

According to the Southern District of Florida submission, the plaintiff qualifies as an individual with disabilities pursuant to the ADA. Because of her blindness, she is “unable to fully engage in and enjoy the major life activity of seeing,” the complaint explains. The filing also states that the plaintiff uses the internet via Screen Reader Software (SRS), which speaks content aloud.

The plaintiff allegedly tried to access features on RadioShack’s website, like a store locator, lists of items available in specific in-store locations, and online purchasing. Reportedly, she was unable to use it because “numerous portions of the website do not interface with and are not readable by SRS.” Specifically, website issues included input fields with inaccessible labels and unlabeled buttons. The complaint alleges that RadioShack website content was either unable to be read aloud or void of the content request, i.e., store locator search results.  

The complaint argued that RadioShack’s website falls within the scope of the ADA and, therefore, the company has the responsibility of ensuring compliance with it. In support of her contention, the plaintiff claims that RadioShack’s “website is an extension of Defendant’s place of public accommodation.”  In addition, the website supposedly “has integrated with and is a nexus to the brick and mortar location,” and “provides access to benefits of (the) Defendant’s physical stores.”

In her filing, the plaintiff described some of the benefits associated with the RadioShack website, and highlights their importance in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, like “pre-shop[ping] the Defendant’s stores to determine whether certain items are available at the store before she leaves home.” Other benefits reportedly include, “order[ing] products online, sign[ing] up for exclusive discounts and news by email, get[ting] information about the store’s return policy, and product warranties.”

However, the complaint contended, because Lucius was unable to access the website, she was and continues to be denied these benefits in violation of Title III of the ADA. In turn, the plaintiff requested declaratory relief, her attorneys’ fees and costs, and injunctive relief requiring RadioShack to alter its website and maintain it in accordance with ADA standards.

The plaintiff is represented by Cunningham PLLC.