Another state intervenes in ADA lawsuit fight saying cases are 'preying' on businesses

Posted at 6:26 PM, Aug 11, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-11 21:42:13-04
LAS VEGAS -- The people who keep targeting businesses with disability lawsuits throughout the Southwest are about take another legal hit.
The Nevada Attorney General's Office wants to intervene in the roughly 275 lawsuits filed by a single plaintiff in Nevada since late January.
Each case is nearly identical to cases filed in Arizona, New Mexico, Utah and Colorado.
The Denver7 Investigates team, in collaboration with our sister station in Phoenix, ABC15, has proven that the cases have connections to a group based in Phoenix called Advocates for Individuals with Disabilities (AID) or Litigation Management and Financial Services.
The lawsuits allege ADA violations at businesses and routinely seek quick settlements in the form of attorney fees, according to numerous businesses owners who've fought the cases.
AID posted jobs for civil rights advocates and ADA attorneys in Denver, Albuquerque and Las Vegas on various job posting sites over the last year.
Staff attorneys at the Nevada Attorney General's Office filed motions to intervene on the Nevada cases that remain open -- "at least 157."
They argue that the cases "are potentially malicious or, at best, premature and poorly drafted; failing to state a cause of action or adequately establish the plaintiff's standing to bring these suits."
They cite a recent ruling from New Mexico, which determined the 99 ADA cases filed by a single plaintiff in New Mexico are malicious. Denver7witnessed the plaintiff admit under oath in U.S. District Court in Albuquerque that the cases are malicious and abusive.
Nevada's Attorney General's Office staff further says the Nevada suits are "fiscally motivated, preying on businesses' income, and, left undeterred, seek to serve as a roadmap for malicious or nuisance litigation whose objective is to obtain monetary settlements..."
The court motion argues that federal law first requires someone to notify the Nevada Equal Rights Commission (NERC) about ADA violations before filing a lawsuit.
Denver7 first asked Colorado Attorney General Cynthia Coffman about the lawsuits in Colorado several months ago. Dozens of the lawsuits remain open.
Late Thursday, a spokesperson said Coffman is "aware of the concerns about potentially frivolous lawsuits." Further, the spokesperson said Coffman is still "in the process of gathering additional information before making any determinations about what if any involvement the state may have."