Los Angelenos claimed the city’s emergency plans do not address the needs of disabled residents. Consequently, the city of Los Angeles agreed to pay $2.1 million in fees and other costs for attorneys who sued on behalf of those disabled Angelenos. Additionally, the federal judge ordered the city of Los Angeles to draft a proposal on assisting disabled residents during an emergency or natural disaster.
The lawsuit stated that those who are disabled cannot access critical information, transportation or evacuation services as easily as those who are not. As a result, disabled persons are more likely to use emergency shelters as they do not have many other options.
“Drive-by” lawsuits filed against small business all over California have increased significantly. People in California are more and more taking advantage of the 1990 Americans With Disabilities Act. Under the current law, it is fairly easy for predatory plaintiffs to access $4,000 for each violation, per day, regardless of how trivial or easily fixable the violation is. However, small-business owners will usually settle, often for tens of thousands of dollars, in exchange for the plaintiff and lawyer to “forget” about the violations.
Consequently, Senator Dianne Feinstein demanded that the Legislature do something to stop the small group of plaintiffs and lawyers that “threaten the viability of small businesses in our state.”