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Bill to curb shakedowns stemming from disability access overwhelmingly approved by Senate - California Newspaper Publishers Association : Legislative And Legal

Bill to curb shakedowns stemming from disability access overwhelmingly approved by Senate

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Posted: Friday, June 1, 2012 4:12 pm | Updated: 11:31 am, Fri Sep 14, 2012.

Legislation introduced to curtail shakedowns of business owners arising from technical violations of the law that protects disability access at California businesses is headed to the Assembly after the Senate voted 36-0 to approve it.  

SB 1186 by Senate President pro tem Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento), would ban "demand" letters that some lawyers send to extract quick cash settlements from business owners before a lawsuit is filed. The bill would also require that notice letters for any alleged construction-related violations be sent to business owners 30 days prior to filing an action to allow the business to fix the problem.

In a statement, Senator Steinberg said, "If a problem is a technical violation but doesn't actually impede access, businesses should have the chance to fix it without the threat of a lawsuit. We need to apply some common sense here."