Reaching Out to Customers With Disabilities: Lesson 8 ADA Compliance Costs and Tax IncentivesA doctor is using a sign language interpreter to discuss treatment options with a patient who is deaf.
Lesson 10: Information SourcesLesson 9: ADA EnforcementLesson 6: Maintaining AccessiblityLesson 7: Transporting Customers Lesson 5: Alternate AccessLesson 5: Removing BarriersLesson 1: Policies & ProceduresLesson 3: Accessible DesignLesson 2: Customer CommunicationsIntroduction: Welcome to the CourseLesson 8: Cost Issues

ADA compliance costs

Businesses may not charge people with disabilities extra to recover the costs of complying with the ADA. These costs should be viewed as a business expense, like other expenses that make up a business’s overall cost of doing business. However, there is another way to offset some of these costs.

ADA tax incentives

Congress has made two kinds of tax incentives available to businesses to help them offset the costs of complying with the ADA. Businesses are allowed to take advantage of these incentives year after year to make their facilities, goods, and services more accessible.

The Disabled Access Credit is available to small businesses that have 30 or fewer employees or total revenues of $1,000,000 or less. A credit of up to $5000 a year is available to offset a business's costs for removing barriers, hiring interpreters or readers needed for effective communication, producing documents in alternate formats such as large print or audiotape, or taking other steps to improve accessibility for customers or employees with disabilities. This provision is found in section 44 of the IRS tax code.

Under section 190 of the IRS tax code, businesses of any size can take a deduction of up to $15,000 each year for the cost of removing barriers in facilities or vehicles.

the cover of the ADA tax packet

Both incentives, the credit and the deduction, are available for removing barriers in existing facilities. The credit is also available for providing effective communication or taking other steps to improve accessibility. Neither of the incentives applies to the costs of building a new facility.

Contact your accountant or the IRS for more information about these ADA tax incentives.

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