The ADA Project Permitted Uses

Sources & Permissions

The goal of the ADA Project is to make materials on this website as widely available as possible, consistent with applicable copyright laws. Therefore, our policy is to obtain as many sources as possible from government, public domain, or open access repositories that freely permit copying and downloading. The extent of permissible usage depends on the source and category of specific documents, as further detailed below.

(1) Government Legal Materials

Court cases, court rules, bills, statutes, committee reports, agency-issued documents, agency regulations, and executive branch materials from the United States, its states or territories are not subject to copyright. Briefs and other legal documents filed with a U.S. or state court or legislative body become a part of the public domain and may be reproduced under the fair use doctrine.

The ADA Project has made every effort to obtain these materials from official government sources so they may be freely downloaded and photocopied by users.

When official government sources are not available, The ADA Project has provided a link to open access sources (if available) where the document may be accessed. These websites have their own usage, access, and citation policies that govern permissible uses.

When open access sources are not available, the ADA Project provides official citation information so that users may search for the documents in print or proprietary databases. 

            (2) Books, Book Chapters, Law Review Articles, and News Articles

Copyright to these materials belongs to the original creator and/or publisher. The ADA Project has made every attempt to obtain permission from the copyright holder to post full text copies of such materials on The ADA Project website.   

Any uses of material from this repository beyond those considered to be fair use under the copyright law require express written permission from the copyright holder. Users may download, print and save materials for personal use, but re-publishing, re-posting, or redistribution of the materials without permission to do so is strictly prohibited.

When we have been unable to obtain permission to post full text copies of such materials, we have provided a link to open access sources (if available) where the documents may be accessed. These websites have their own usage, access, and citation policies that govern permissible uses.

When open access sources are not available, The ADA Project provides official citation information so that users may search for the documents in print or proprietary databases. 

(3) Coalition Organization Materials

The ADA Archive section of the website contains materials generated by members of the disability coalition community advocating for passage of the ADA and ADAAA. These materials include agendas, newsletters, draft bills, faxes, and letters to and from the coalition – many of which contain hand-written annotations.  To the extent possible, The ADA Project has obtained permission from the relevant organizations to post full text versions of the documents.  In many cases, however, it has not been possible to ascertain authorship of hand-written notes and annotations.

Copyright to these materials belongs to the original author and/or organization. Any uses of material from this repository beyond those considered to be fair use under the copyright law require express written permission from the copyright holder. Users may download, print and save materials for personal use, but re-publishing, re-posting, or redistribution of the materials without permission to do so is strictly prohibited.


The Feldblum Collection

Many of the materials in The ADA Archive section of the website were donated by Chai Feldblum. Ms. Feldblum played a crucial role in the creation and later enforcement of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA).   From 1988 to 1991, Feldblum worked at the AIDS Project of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).  While at the ACLU, she served as a legislative lawyer for the disability community and was part of a team that negotiated and drafted the ADA.  Years later, while she was a Law Professor and Director of the Legislation and Administrative Law Clinic at Georgetown University Law Center, she represented the Epilepsy Foundation of America in seeking a legislative response to a series of Supreme Court cases that narrowed the scope of the ADA’s coverage.   These efforts resulted in the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAAA), which clarifies the definition of disability, leading to broader coverage of individuals with disabilities.

 The Feldblum Collection includes original source materials and other documents from her personal archive that provide a rich history of the key players, process, and political context surrounding passage of the ADA and ADAAA. They are reproduced here with her permission. However, neither Ms. Feldblum nor The ADA Project claim copyright ownership to most of the content in the collection, with the exception of materials authored by Ms. Feldblum.


Fair Use

Section 107 of the Copyright Act contains a “fair use” exception that permits the use of copyrighted material without permission for certain types of uses—such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is fact-specific and determined on a case-by-case basis based upon consideration of the following four factors:

(1) Purpose and character of the use, including whether the use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;

(2) Nature of the copyrighted work;

(3) Amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and

(4) Effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.

Users who wish to reproduce or distribute materials from The ADA Project website for purposes beyond personal use may wish to analyze whether their proposed use falls within the fair use doctrine. Please note that The ADA Project cannot provide legal advice as to whether a particular type of use constitutes fair use.

For additional information on fair use, please see https://www.copyright.gov/fair-use/more-info.html.