The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
The ADA: Questions and Answers
- Q. Is the Federal government covered by the
- A. The ADA does not cover the executive branch of the Federal
Government. The executive branch continues to be covered by title V
of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which prohibits discrimination
in services and employment on the basis of handicap and which is a
model for the requirements of the ADA. The ADA, however, does cover
Congress and other entities in the legislative branch of the
- Q. What requirements, other than those mandating
nondiscrimination in employment, does the ADA place on State and
- A. All government facilities, services, and communications must
be accessible in accordance with the requirements of title II of
the ADA. Those requirements are based on section 504 of the
Rehabilitation Act of 1973. Individuals may file complaints with
Federal agencies designated by the Attorney General or bring
- Q. Does the ADA cover private apartments and private
- A. The ADA generally does not cover private residences. If,
however, a place of public accommodation, such as a doctor's office
or day care center, is located in a private residence, those
portions of the residence used for that purpose are subject to the
- Q. Does the ADA cover air transportation?
- A. Discrimination by air carriers is not covered by the ADA but
rather by the Air Carrier Access Act (49 U.S.C. 1374 (c)).
- Q. What are the ADA's requirements for public transit
- A. The Department of Transportation has issued regulations
mandating accessible public transit vehicles and facilities. The
regulations include requirements that all new fixed-route, public
transit buses be accessible and that supplementary paratransit
services be provided for those individuals with disabilities who
cannot use fixed-route bus service.
- Q. How will the ADA make telecommunications
- A. The ADA requires the establishment of telephone relay
services for individuals who use telecommunications devices for the
deaf (TDD's) or similar devices. The Federal Communications
Commission has issued regulations specifying standards for the
operation of these services.
- Q. Are businesses entitled to any tax benefit to help
pay for the cost of compliance?
- A. As amended in 1990, the Internal Revenue Code allows a
deduction of up to $15,000 per year for expenses associated with
the removal of qualified architectural and transportation barriers.
The 1990 amendment also permits eligible small businesses to
receive a tax credit for certain costs of compliance with the ADA.
An eligible small business is one whose gross receipts do not
exceed $1,000,000 or whose workforce does not consist of more than
30 full-time workers. Qualifying businesses may claim a credit of
up to 50 percent of eligible access expenditures that exceed $250
but do not exceed $10,250. Examples of eligible access expenditures
include the necessary and reasonable costs of removing
architectural, physical, communications, and transportation
barriers; providing readers, interpreters, and other auxiliary
aids; and acquiring or modifying equipment or devices.
This page was last modified on January 15, 1997.
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