I’m sharing a split screen with a complaint filed in March of 2023 from Gottlieb & Associates. And the signing attorney is Dana Gottlieb, also listed are Michael LaBollita and Jeffrey Gottlieb.
And now let’s go through the claims of inaccessibility in the complaint. First is lack of alternative text. Second is empty links that contain no text causing the function or purpose of the link not to be presented to the user. Third, redundant links where adjacent links go to the same URL address, which results in additional navigation and repetition for keyboard and screen reader users. And then last, linked images missing alt text, which causes problems if an image within a link contains no text and that image does not provide alt text.
Also listed are many pages on the website contain the same title links. The website also contained a host of broken links. One claim to highlight is redundant links where adjacent links go to the same URL address. This is actually something not having redundant links is not actually specified in the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines.
So nowhere in WCAG 2.1 AA, looking through those success criteria, nowhere will you see something that forbids redundant links being repeated. You will see links going to the same URL address that isn’t allowed. But it’s not to say that that wouldn’t be optimal, right? We don’t want to create additional navigation where it is unnecessary.
But it’s also one of those claims where it’s really on the fringe optimally. Yes, there will only be the number of links that is necessary. But this is not to say that having two links, let’s say you have a link to buy a product now and the product image is linked and then there’s a link to buy now. That additional navigation, that’s hardly something that would be a barrier to access. And it’s also something where you could argue, well, we’re providing additional ways to navigate to a page.
So, this letter C here listed under the claims is not by itself. This is to be taken in the aggregate. And I think what Gottlieb would put forth is that this, in combination with these other accessibility issues, creates an inaccessible experience. And so they want to list as many claims as possible. But redundant links is something that we see. It’s a very common theme amongst several of these others. We see plaintiffs law firms coming up with the same grouping of claims.
Missing alternative text looms large. That is the number one claim of inaccessibility. And this leads in part to why I created the ADA compliance course because I have taken the complaints. I have looked through complaints from all of the most active plaintiffs law firms in this space. And I have created a course which itemizes each of the most commonly claimed issues and then tells you how to find those issues. So how to audit for those issues and then how to fix them. So how to remediate those issues so that your website can be cannot have any of these issues that plaintiffs lawyers are looking for and then claiming in litigation.
That’s not to say this is completely exhaustive of all the accessibility measures you could take. But what it does do is it significantly reduces your risk of litigation because, again, I’m reading through this now. I’ve already read through several dozens of these complaints filed by these most active law firms. I know what they are looking for and I know the issues that they are actually claiming in litigation. So I’ve taken those and made a course from that. And that course is something that website owners can give to their Web teams and just tell them to go follow the instructions in this course, follow the strategy in this course.
I go step by step in the order of prioritization and remediate these issues so that we don’t have any of the issues on our website that lead to this litigation. And then from there, you can go ahead and become fully WCAG conforming.
But it’s important to be proactive and start right away so that you don’t you’re not facing litigation. You’re not you don’t have to pay out an additional fifteen thousand to twenty five thousand dollars on your own defense attorney and then also settling with a plaintiff’s law firm. And you can also undergo remediation on your own time. And so that’s that’s obviously very advantageous.
And that’s really getting at the essence of the course is preventing litigation through genuine, genuine accessibility. And so I’m going through these claims. I’m going to list all of the other videos in the description below. But this is a complaint filed by Gottlieb & Associates, and they are one of the most active plaintiffs law firms in the space.