| Thursday, 6/30/2011
The National Association of the Deaf (NAD), Vargas & Stein, LLP and Raymond Marshall of Chason, Rosner, Leary & Marshall filed a lawsuit against BB&T Bank in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia on behalf of the Virginia Association of the Deaf, Inc. (VAD) and a deaf Virginia resident, Melanie Williams. The lawsuit alleges that BB&T’s policy of refusing relay calls is a violation of Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. The lawsuit asks the court to order BB&T to adopt a policy where all incoming relay calls from people who are deaf or hard of hearing must be accepted in same extent that they accept telephone calls from hearing customers.
The VAD has a number of members who are customers of BB&T. Along with Ms. Williams, they are unable to access BB&T’s customer service via telephone because BB&T customer service representatives refuse to accept relay services.