Tag Archives: ADA

Hospitality Industry Legal Update: “Veteran Says Hotel Dispute Over Service Dog Led to Arrest”

White suffered a traumatic brain injury and spinal wounds while serving with the U.S. Army in Afghanistanservice animal in 2012 when a 200-pound improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle. The Wyoming, Mich., resident said he has been on anxiety medication and has been helped greatly by Camo.

A bill making its way through the Legislature may prevent situations like the one Monday night in which a young veteran was arrested at a Bonita Springs hotel after he, his family and his service dog were denied lodging.

Jason White, 34, was arrested at the Best Western following a dispute with the hotel manager and staff over his service dog, Camo. He was charged with battery and destruction of property, the Lee County sheriff’s report said, after he kicked and cracked a television and shoved the hotel manager, Vinit “Vinnie” Patel.

For more: http://newspr.es/1Ej6AHZ

And for more on the do’s and don’ts of service animals, check out the video below from Petra’s own P3 Risk Management Team.

Petra Risk Solutions’ Director of Risk Management, Todd Seiders, offers a P3 Hospitality Risk Report – ‘ADA Service Animals: Do’s and Don’ts’. 

P3 (Petra Plus Process) is the Risk Management Division of Petra Risk Solutions – America ’s largest independent insurance brokerage devoted exclusively to the hospitality marketplace.

For more information on Petra and P3 visit petrarisksolutions.com or call 800.466.8951.

Leave a comment

Filed under ADA, Employee Practices, Guest Issues, Hotel Employees, Hotel Industry, Insurance, Management And Ownership, Risk Management, Training

Hospitality Industry Technology Update: “Does YOUR Website Have to be Accessible Under the Americans with Disabilities Act?”

Clearly, it has no brick-and-mortar store that we can shop in so the answer should be “no ADA coverage for its website.” That is exactly what happened in its California district court case (Cullen).Handicap-Assessible1-300x225 But, in Massachusetts, the district court case (National Association of the Deaf) went the other way. Law school professors call such cases “outliers,” but in the courtroom today’s outlier sometimes becomes tomorrow’s conventional wisdom.

Is the internet a place of public accommodation: a virtual town hall or a virtual shopping mall or a virtual movie theater? Courts still struggle with that.

Physicalist courts say that the ADA requires a physical location. Ouelette v. Viacom, No. cv 10-133-M-DWM-JCL, 2011 WL 1882780 (D. Mont. March 31, 2011) (no ADA claim re YouTube); Noah v. AOL Time Warner, 261 F. Supp. 2d 532 (E.D. Va. 2003) (same re: chat room); Earll v. eBay, Inc., No. 5:11-cv-00262-JF (HRL), 2011 WL 3955485 (N.D. Cal. Sept. 7, 2011) (same: no ADA claim re eBay); Cullen v. Netflix, Inc., 880 F. Supp. 2d 1017 (N.D. Cal. 2012) (same: no ADA claim re Netflix); Jancik v. Redbox Automated Retail, LLC, No. SACV 13-1387-DOC, 2014 WL 1920751 (C.D. Cal. May 14, 2014) (same: no ADA claim re redboxinstant.com).

Virtualist courts say there are places in the heart and in the mind too. Those courts proclaim that the core meaning of the ADA is that “the owner or operator of a store, hotel, restaurant, dentist’s office, travel agency, theater, Website, or other facility (whether in physical space or in electronic space …) that is open to the public cannot exclude disabled persons from entering the facility and, once in, from using the facility in the same way that the nondisabled do.”

For more: http://bit.ly/1KJS79f

Leave a comment

Filed under Hotel Industry, Management And Ownership, Risk Management, Technology

Hospitality Industry Management Update: “New Year, New Challenges: What Hospitality Employers Need to Know”

As state and federal budget cuts tend to wane, the Department of Labor (DOL) is expected to step up enforcement against hospitality employers in the coming year. restaurant workerBecause the DOL considers the hospitality industry as a “fissured” industry, owners, franchisors, franchisees and management companies should be prepared to deal with inquiries, particularly in the areas of tipped employees and the misclassification of employees.

According the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the hospitality sector added 321,000 additional jobs in 2014. With all those new employees, as well as the continued addition of jobs we expect to see in coming year, here are our top predictions for labor law issues that will play a vital role in the hospitality industry in 2015.

For more: http://bit.ly/17E9sRJ

Leave a comment

Filed under Employee Benefits, Hotel Employees, Hotel Industry, Hotel Restaurant, Labor Issues, Management And Ownership, Training

Hospitality Industry Management Update: “As Marijuana Becomes Legal in More States, How Should Employers Handle Positive Drug Tests?”

“…Hospitality employers also need to be aware of potential violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) associated with medical marijuana.  Employers with facilities in states that allow medical marijuana use may need to provide a reasonable accommodation under the ADA for employees with a valid doctor’s authorization. 042314_acuna_marijuana_640 For instance, the New York statute permitting medical marijuana use automatically classifies every individual who is considered a Certified Patient as disabled.  Therefore, New York employers must engage in an interactive process with the employee to determine whether they need to provide the employee with a reasonable accommodation…”

Due to the ever changing laws surrounding the legality of marijuana, many of our hospitality clients have recently asked us whether it is lawful to terminate an employee who has tested positive for marijuana.  The answer varies greatly depending on the state in which you are located.

States continue to pass legislation legalizing marijuana use for specific purposes.  On July 5, 2014, New York became the twenty-first state along with the District of Columbia to legalize marijuana use for certain medical conditions—joining Alaska, Arizona, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, and Vermont.  Two other states, Colorado and Washington, have legalized recreational marijuana use for individuals who are 21 years old or older, and Alaska and Oregon currently have similar legislation pending.

For more: http://bit.ly/1Bek1W8

Leave a comment

Filed under Employee Practices, Hotel Employees, Hotel Industry, Management And Ownership

Hospitliaty Industry Management Update: “Train Businesses on Service-Animal Laws” (With Video)

“…Customers do have a responsibility to ensure their service animals are behaved. service-dog-courseFederal law makes an exception if the dog is out of control and its handler does not control it, or if the dog is not housebroken. However, that only means the pooch can be removed from the premises; the handler still is entitled to full accommodation…”

When it comes to accommodating customers with service animals, some businesses need to be taught new tricks.

As reported Monday by The News-Journal’s Chris Graham, Steve Keene is the latest person with a service dog to have encountered difficulties at a local establishment in recent years. When the Port Orange resident showed up with his dog Kima at the Racing’s North Turn restaurant in Ponce Inlet, staff asked him for documentation proving the black Labrador-Australian shepherd mix is a service animal. When he became irate at the request, he was asked to leave.

For more: http://bit.ly/1ojcuAZ

For a brief video on how to best train your staff for handling guests with ADA service animals, check out the video below:

[vimeo https://vimeo.com/102936915 w=500&h=281]

Petra Risk Solutions’ Risk Management Director, Todd Seiders, offers a P3 Hospitality Risk Report – ‘ADA Service Animals: Do’s and Don’ts’. 

P3 (Petra Plus Process) is the Risk Management Division of Petra Risk Solutions – America ’s largest independent insurance brokerage devoted exclusively to the hospitality marketplace.

For more information on Petra and P3 visit petrarisksolutions.com or call 800.466.8951.

Leave a comment

Filed under Employee Practices, Guest Issues, Hotel Employees, Hotel Industry, Management And Ownership, Training

Hospitality Industry Legal Update: “Veteran, Local Service Dog Turned Away From Hotel”

“…He went to Panama City Beach with his dog, which he depends on, along with his parents and his roommate.Karl-Fleming-and-dog He went looking for a hotel room at the Front Beach Inn….Fleming said he was yelled at by the front desk clerk and told she had no vacancies when the sign out front read vacancy. Fleming said she later told police they had rooms…”

Karl Fleming was just looking to do something fun at the request of his family, but it turned into a distressing situation when he and his service dog were turned away from a hotel.

Army veteran Fleming attended K9s for Warriors camp in Ponte Vedra Beach. He graduated with his service dog ‘Kuchar’ last year and moved on, ready to face the world. But Wednesday night he had a setback.

Fleming has a traumatic brain injury as a result of a rocket propelled grenade while he was serving in Afghanistan in 2011.

For more: http://fcnews.tv/1A1SZAR

For a brief video on some of the steps you can take to help train your front desk staff at your hotel, check out the video below:

Petra Risk Solutions’ Loss Control Manager, Marco Johnson, offers a P3 Hospitality Risk Report – ‘Front Desk Best Practices’. 

P3 (Petra Plus Process) is the Risk Management Division of Petra Risk Solutions – America ’s largest independent insurance brokerage devoted exclusively to the hospitality marketplace.

For more information on Petra and P3 visit petrarisksolutions.com or call 800.466.8951.

Leave a comment

Filed under Employee Practices, Guest Issues, Hotel Employees, Hotel Industry, Management And Ownership, Training

Hospitality Industry Legal Update: “Small Palm Springs Hotels Slapped with Disability Lawsuits”

“…The lawsuit claims Langer wanted to stay at her hotel back in March,calla lily inn palm springs - 01 but it didn’t have a parking space compliant with the American with Disabilities Act. Other hotel owners on Belardo Road said they’re getting sued for the same issue and were surprised to discover Langer has a reputation for filing lawsuits…”

Leslie Dunn owns the Calla Lily Inn in Palm Springs. The boutique hotel, built in the 1950s, has nine rooms and nine parking spots.

Her business is among at least four small Palm Springs hotels, including the Del Marcos Hotel and Chase Hotel, getting sued by Chris Langer, of San Diego, for not having handicapped accessible parking available on their property.

For more: http://bit.ly/1zu1apl

Leave a comment

Filed under Guest Issues, Hotel Industry, Liability, Maintenance, Management And Ownership, Risk Management