Full News article in Orange County Register, portions of which are shown below, can be seen by clicking here.
The following contains excerpts from the Orange County Register article, with some comments by the Karlin Law Firm. These comments are in bold and italics are not part of the article.
The Orange County
Sunday, October 2nd 2022
Websites that violate disability laws squeezed for financial settlements
‘To me, it’s blackmail,’ said an Orange County real estate agent. ‘Suddenly, I’m not motivated to have a website’
PUBLISHED: October 2, 2022 at 6:50 a.m. | UPDATED: October 2, 2022 at 6:50 a.m.
Andres Gomez of Miami, during a video deposition done by The Karlin Law Firm of Tustin. The law firm announced on Wednesday, September 28, 2022, that they won their 17th dismissal of an ADA website lawsuit brought by the Florida man who has filed more than 600 lawsuits against small businesses in California and Florida. [Comment by Karlinlaw – at our press conference we also pointed out that we had forced Gomez to pay our client over $8,500 in costs incurred by our client in the effort to get the case dismissed, and also all 17 were dismissed with no payment to Gomez or his lawyers and without any settlement agreement.]
Andres Gomez is a serial litigant.
That is, Gomez, who says he is legally blind, looks for websites that are not accessible to him and sues them for violating state and federal disability laws.
By one estimate, the 34-year-old Miami man has filed more than 600 disability compliance lawsuits in Florida and California since 2015, sometimes famously. Gomez sued the Kardashians’ clothing stores, Dash, in 2016 and has gone after other big name fashion retailers, alleging their websites are incompatible with the screen reading software he uses to navigate the web, according to published reports.
His attorney calls Gomez a “tester” for the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990, a crusader fighting for the rights of the disabled, trying to wrestle businesses into online compliance by attacking their wallets.
One Orange County law firm, however, contends Gomez is a scammer and can see better than he lets on. The Tustin-based Karlin Law Firm alleges Gomez has illegally milked millions of dollars in settlements by perpetuating a hoax and strong-arming businesses big and small.
The Karlin firm has obtained dismissals in 17 of Gomez’s lawsuits.
[Comment by by the Karlin Law Firm : The OC Register News article later goes on to note regarding the particular case where Gomez was ended up paying the defendant’s costs the following:]
Fast Toys Club, which puts customers into cars on a race course, was one of the companies sued by Andres Gomez, who claimed to be interested in the service.
Fast Toys was among a group of clients represented by Karlin Law. In depositions, Gomez said he could not read text that was enlarged by 3,200% — eight times larger than the largest letter on a standard eye chart.
[Comment by The Karlin Law Firm: The Deposition was taken by Scott Karlin of the Karlin Law Firm and recorded by video]
Yet Danet said Gomez in 2015 successfully used music production software that did not accommodate his screen reader and was loaded with fine print.
[Comment by The Karlin Law Firm: The particular program Gomez said he was able to use without screen reading software was FL Studio. Mike Karlin, an Attorney at the Karlin Law Firm headed the team that analyzed these claims being familiar this type of music producing software and noted inconstancies in other uses of websites by Gomez as stated in his deposition, as well as inconsistencies in his deposition testimony and what was captured in the Karlin Law Firm’s private investigation of Andres Gomez and surveillance videos obtained as part of that investigation. The OC Register article continues with this: ]
Gomez also said in his sworn deposition that he could not walk without a cane or person to assist him, that he needed handrails to negotiate stairs and that he needed help finding his rideshare driver, according to Danet.
But a 16-minute video created by the Karlin firm showed Gomez climbing stairs unaided, without a cane and not using the handrail. He walked briskly to his ride share and climbed in the car without any help locating the vehicle.