Disability Rights

In 2006, Woerthwein & Miller won a great settlement from the City of Chicago, forcing it to put in curb ramps that comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act and its Accessibility Guidelines. The City also agreed to spend $10,000,000.00 a year to bring existing curb ramps into compliance.
Although Chicago has agreed to bring every curb ramp into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act and its Accessibility Guidelines, our work isn’t done. The City’s agreement expired in 2011. It’s very likely that there are more curb ramps that violate the ADA.

Every time Chicago resurfaces a street, the curb ramps have to be right. That means the cross-street curb ramps and the alley curb ramps as well. It doesn’t matter that the alley or cross street wasn’t paved—Chicago agreed to fix those ramps as well.

We can’t do all the checking ourselves. There are too many ramps for any one person to check them all. With the help of everyone in Chicago, we can ensure that the City complies with the law. If you see a problem curb ramp — of any kind new, old, or not done right, then you should call 311 and the City will take corrective action. If anyone fails to get a satisfactory result or if Chicago doesn’t do it correctly, send an email to us at

Here is what Chicago was ordered to do:

From now on Chicago will only install curb ramps and sidewalks that meet or exceed the specifications of the Federal ADA guidelines (the “ADAAG”).

For the next 5 years (2006-2011) Chicago was ordered to spend $50,000,000 ($10,000,000 per year) in new money to repair and replace curb ramps and sidewalks in high traffic areas which were not on Chicago’s schedule for repair or replacement. Chicago will also continue to spend approximately eighteen million dollars ($18,000,000) each year installing curb ramps and sidewalks as a part of Chicago’s annual resurfacing work.

Chicago was also ordered to install curb ramps at each cross street at its intersection with the alteration or resurfacing, so that the altered or resurfaced intersections are fully accessible to mobility-impaired persons with disabilities. For example: if Chicago paves Dearborn Street from Adams to Monroe, the curb ramps to cross Monroe at Dearborn Street and the curb ramps to cross the alley between Adams and Monroe must be ADA compliant even though Chicago did not pave Monroe or the alley.

You may be asking: “How do I know if the installation is ok? The answer is to look and see if it is a nice smooth ramp from the street through the gutter to the sidewalk. If it is, it’s probably ok. If not, call us or send us an email.

What our clients think of us

Second to None

Mr. Woerthwein’s expertise in foreclosure defense is second to none. Not only does he have great command over the complex legal issues surrounding mortgage backed securities (MBS), he is one of the few Illinois attorneys who can actually claim meaningful success against major Wall Street banks.  His clear, concise and brilliant legal brief filed in the Northern Illinois District court enabled him to prevail in his Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff bank’s foreclosure complaint WITH prejudice for lack of standing.  For the first time since the financial crisis began in 2008, courts across the country are discovery what homeowners have known for some time — most banks foreclosing today don’t have proper standing !

Superb Legal Counsel

Mr. Woerthwein and his team are exceptional. Not only did they handle my foreclosure case, but they did it expeditiously. Ted is head and shoulders above most Chicago lawyers I interviewed because he is well versed on the complex legal issues surrounding Mortgage-Backed Securities (MBS)