handicap_accessThe US Department of Justice has issued a final rule increasing civil penalties for violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act relating to “professional offices of health care providers” including dental offices, according to American Dental Association’s ADA News. The final rule “adjusts for inflation” civil monetary penalties assessed or enforced by the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division.

While the rule is effective April 27, 2014, the DOJ stated that the increased penalties will only apply to violations occurring on or after April 28, 2014.

According to the Federal Register, the adjustment increases the maximum civil penalty for a first violation under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act from $55,000 to $75,000. The new maximum for a subsequent violation is $150,000. According to the DOJ, Title III addresses 12 types of public accommodations, including professional offices of health care providers and hospitals. A professional office or a health care provider is defined as a location where a state-regulated professional provides physical or mental health services to the public.