Department of Justice Issues Final Rule Adjusting Inflation for Civil Monetary Penalties Under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Last month, the Department of Justice issued a Final Rule that adjusts inflation for the civil monetary penalties assessed or enforced by the Civil Rights Division, including civil penalties available under title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).   For the ADA, this adjustment increases the maximum civil penalty for a first violation under title III from $55,000 to $75,000; for a subsequent violation the new maximum is $150,000. The new maximums only apply to violations occurring on or after April 28, 2014.

This Final Rule is a non-discretionary agency action made pursuant to Section 4 of the Federal Civil Penalties Adjustment Act of 1990, as amended (Adjustment Act), which mandates the Attorney General to adjust for inflation the civil penalties assessed or enforced by the Department of Justice. The amounts of the adjustment were determined according to a specific mathematical formula set forth in Section 5 of the Adjustment Act. The previous adjustment under the ADA occurred in 1999.