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U.S. D.O.J. Extends ADA Compliance Date For Pools And Spas

By Sherin and Lodgen on May 29, 2012

Public accommodations with pools and spas built before March 15, 2012 now have until January 31, 2013 to comply with the 2010 Standards, to the extent such compliance is “readily achievable”, by providing accessible means of entering and exiting swimming pools, wading pools and spas.   The extension does not apply to newly constructed or altered pools and spas.

There are certain exceptions to the 2010 Standards, including multiple spas or pools located in clusters, as well as wave pools, lazy rivers, and other pools that allow only one point of entry.  Public accommodations should consult the rules before initiating any barrier removal to ensure their compliance with the 2010 Standards.  Indeed, the DOJ enacted the extension to allow such affected entities to seek clarification of their obligations. It also has issued technical assistance guidelines for compliance with the 2010 Standards as they relate to pools. These can be found at: <a href=”http://www.ada.gov/pools_2010.htm”.

Certain public accommodations may be able to take advantage of federal tax credits or tax deductions for barrier removal costs or alterations; any entity undertaking barrier removal should consult their tax or financial advisor to determine whether such deductions or credits may be available.