Class Action Accuses Apple of Violating Disability Laws

Class Action Accuses Apple of Violating Disability Laws u00a9

Apple Inc. is violating federal disability laws by using flat-screen point of sale devices that blind and visually impaired customers can’t use without risking identity theft, a federal class action contends.

Because flat screens provide no tactile clues for the location of the numbers on the device’s face, a person with visual disabilities using a debit card must tell the clerk what his or her personal identification number is to complete the transaction, according to the suit filed Feb. 28 in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida.

The complaint in David New v. Apple Inc. said the absence of any safe accommodation for the visually impaired violates Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act. New is blind and encountered the inaccessible keypad at an Apple store in Miami Beach.

The complaint said checkout devices with tactilely discernible keypad surfaces are readily available and are used by many retail merchants. The suit seeks an injunction directing Apple to update or replace its devices.

Tiffany Anderson and Andrew Boese of Leon Cosgrove, in Coral Gables, Fla., represent New.

Lisa Hoffman is a contributing writer for The National Law Journal.