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US Department of Justice Civil Rights Division - Letter - tal211

US Department of Justice Civil Rights Division - Letter - tal211

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Published by: legalmatters on Sep 20, 2007
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OCT 27 1992The Honorable Phil GrammUnited States Senator712 Main Street, Suite 2400Houston, Texas 77002Attention: Sherrie ParksDear Senator Gramm:This letter responds to your inquiry on behalf of (b)(6)concerning the applicability of title III of the Americanswith Disabilities Act (ADA) to car rental companies.The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) authorizes theDepartment of Justice to provide technical assistance toindividuals and entities having rights or obligations under theAct. This letter provides informal guidance to assist yourconstituent in understanding the ADA's provisions. However, itdoes not constitutes a legal interpretation, and it is notbinding on the Department.Title III of the ADA, which prohibits public accommodationsfrom discriminating against persons with disabilities, does applyto rental establishments, including car rental companies.Specifically, there are two different provisions that may applyto the circumstances (b)(6) has described: those relating tobarrier removal and those relating to modifications of policies.Both provisions are discussed in detail in the Department's titleIII regulations and technical assistance manual, copies of whichare enclosed.Barrier removal is addressed beginning with Section 36.304(page 35599) of the regulation and at page 28 of the manual.Modification of policies is discussed in Section 36.302 (page35597) and on pages 22-4 of the manual. An additional provisionof the regulation may be relevant: Section 36.301 of theregulation (page 35596) addresses the prohibition againstsurcharges for accommodations required under the ADA, includingbarrier removal and modification of policies.cc: Records; Chrono; Wodatch; McDowney; Breen; FOIA; MAF.:udd:jonessandra:ada.gramml
- 2 -I have also enclosed for (b)(6) information a pamphletthat generally addresses ADA requirements for car rentalagencies. The pamphlet was developed by the Council of BetterBusiness Bureaus Foundation under a grant from the Department of Justice.It is not possible for us to determine from the informationprovided in XX correspondence whether the actions of thecompany she described violated the provisions of the ADA notedabove. If, on receiving this information and reviewing theregulations and manual, she wishes to request the Department topursue an investigation to determine whether a violation didoccur and, if so, to pursue the statutory remedies, she may do soin accordance with the procedures discussed in the manual onpages 64-6.I hope this information assists you in responding to yourconstituent.Sincerely,John R. DunneAssistant Attorney GeneralCivil Rights DivisionEnclosures (3)01-01661
6/29/92TO: SharonFROM: (b)(6)This is to follow up our conversation last week, regarding Title III of theADA and our trouble in trying to get Hertz to accommodate our needs fora van rental with the rear seat removed.As you can see from the letter, we have a partial victory. My perseverancehas gotten us the van, but at a much higher cost than we should have to pay,or can afford. I should be able to pay the original price quoted when Ifirst tried to rent, since service should have been in place at that time.That is what I am trying to accomplish now.But as you can tell from all this, companies will only obey the law if youforce them into it. People less knowledgable will still be getting jerked
around. A few wellplaced phone calls might get some of the major companiesto comply. Hertz doesn't even have a toll free customer service number.I have been calling the Customer Relations Manager in Oklahoma City, CarolLoud, (405) 721-6440.Thanks for any help you can give.(b)(6)01-01662
(b)(6)June 27, 1992Mr. Craig R. Koch, PresidentHertz North American Rental225 Brae Blvd.Parkridge, NJ 07656Dear Mr. Koch,Although my husband has Multiple Sclerosis, we like totravel like any other family. I am writing to report aproblem I am having with your company, Hertz Car Rental.My husband now needs to travel with a three-wheelmobility cart, and therefore we need a minivan to fit thecart, luggage and family in. Even with a van, the rearseat would have to be removed to accommodate the cart.In early June I called several car rental companies toinquire about rates and availabilities. We will betraveling to San Diego on July 11, returning to Dallas onJuly 18. Hertz is the only company with on premises rentalin San Diego, which is necessary with the cart.The rate quoted for one week, unlimited mileage, was$268.99. However, the reservationist said that Hertz'spolicy was that the rear seat could not be removed. I wastold it was because customers had damaged the vehicles. Iexplained why we needed it, and that the removal would bedone by the agent. I was told the only thing that could bedone was to call San Diego directly and ask the manager if he would do it. Money was spent to call San Diego Hertztwice to get the manager, and again be told, no.We then reserved a full size car, since that seemed to

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