National Association of the Deaf v. Florida, No. 18-12786 (11th Cir. 2020)Annotate this Case
The Eleventh Circuit vacated its previous opinion and issued the following opinion.
Plaintiff and the Association filed suit under Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act against several Florida entities and officials, challenging defendants' failure to provide captioning for live and archived videos of Florida legislative proceedings.
The court affirmed the district court's denial of defendant's motion to dismiss, holding that it has jurisdiction to hear defendants' interlocutory appeal. The court affirmed the district court's alternative holding that Congress validly abrogated defendants' Eleventh Amendment immunity for these claims under Title II regardless of whether a fundamental right is implicated. Because the court affirmed on this basis, it did not reach the question of whether the ability to participate in the democratic process is a fundamental right. The court stated that Congress validly abrogated sovereign immunity for this claim under the standard for important rights that nonetheless receive only rational basis review.
The court also affirmed the district court's holding that plaintiffs were entitled to pursue injunctive relief under the doctrine of Ex parte Young for allegedly ongoing violations of Title II. Finally, given the substantial overlap between plaintiffs' ADA and Rehabilitation Act claims, the court held that the district court did not encroach on the Legislative Defendants' immunity.
This opinion or order relates to an opinion or order originally issued on January 3, 2020.