This question relates to the ADA. If a pool deemed “private” by the current standards invite another established swim team in for a meet, do the new ADA requirements have to be met? Some people say they would, because you are bringing outside people in, others say no because they are guests of the current members. Thanks for anything you can provide, our board has banned swim meets because of fear of an ADA investigation/suit.
Country relating to Question: United States
State (if USA): Virginia
Talking to people at DOJ, but different ones give different answers.
A place of public accommodation is any public or private facility that is open to the general public. Public accommodations are fully subject to the ADA.A private swim club, that restricts membership based upon any bona fide rules is not subject to the ADA. Admission of member guests does not convert the club into a public accommodation. However, if the club sells memberships to the general public, without any restriction other than cost, then the club is a place of public accommodation. Put another way, money alone does not make a private club. There must be something more involved required of members than their money (e.g., participation in projects, events, fundraisers, etc.). The Department of Justice provides the following examples:
ILLUSTRATION 1: A private residential apartment complex includes a swimming pool for use by apartment tenants and their guests. The complex also sells pool "memberships" generally to the public. The pool qualifies as a place of public accommodation.
ILLUSTRATION 2: A residential condominium association maintains a longstanding policy of restricting use of its party room to owners, residents, and their guests. Consistent with that policy, it refuses to rent the room to local businesses and community organizations as a meeting place for educational seminars. The party room is not a place of public accommodation.
In my view, swim meets which permit access to a non-member swim team and their friends and family would convert the private club into a public accommodation, because there would be no effective limit on who could attend the swim meet.
Hope this helps.
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Answer does not specifically answer the question. The swim team coming in, which is from another community defined as "private", is invited by the home team as their guests. I don't see how this would then put the pool in the public arena.
If the swim team is permitted to bring family and friends in attendance, then that would create a public accommodation, because there is no means of reasonably restricting that additional audience. If the swim team is allowed to compete, but no one else can attend, then that would lean towards remaining a private event.Note: If you are looking for a "dead-on point" answer, you won't find it, because drawing the line between private and public accommodations is a matter for a judge and jury. The best that I or anyone else can do is to explain the legal factors involved in making the determination. After that, if you want to challenge a specific scenario, then you would have to seek a Declaratory Judgment from the federal District Court that has jurisdiction in the county where the private club is located.Hope this helps. NOTICE: My goal here is to entertain while educating the public about the law. Your positive feedback to the website is appreciated. If you need to contact me again, please put my user id at the beginning of your question ("ToCustomerquot;), and the system will send me an alert. Please Click the following link for IMPORTANT LEGAL INFORMATION. Thanks and best wishes!
I really did not like the answers, and felt they wouldn't help me as a commissioner change the position of the team in my league who has banned home meets. Having a swim meet with no parents, etc. from the other team will not work – these adults serve as meet officials and are considered as part of the team. Without them the meet couldn't be conducted. Only people from the community where the visiting team is from would attend the meet, not just anyone can walk off the street and go to one of our meets. It is also is not fair to restrict a parent from observing a child who competes in a sporting competition.When talking to people at DOJ and the hot lines set up by ADA I have gotten different answers to essentially the same questions. Some say swim meets are acceptable, others say if held they will not allow a pool to remain private. When running a swim league I need a more definitive and correct answer. Thank you.Bill XXXXXX
Guests of guests create a public accommodation. Guests of members do not. If swim meet participants who are guests are permitted to bring their own guests (family and friends), then your club is a public accommodation.Hope this helps. NOTICE: My goal here is to entertain while educating the public about the law. Your positive feedback to the website is appreciated. If you need to contact me again, please put my user id at the beginning of your question ("ToCustomer), and the system will send me an alert. Please Click the following link for IMPORTANT LEGAL INFORMATION. Thanks and best wishes!41067.9164763079
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