takes advantage of laws meant to help the disabled for personal gain.

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Alabama State Attorney General

Office of the Attorney General
Alabama State House
11 South Union Street, Third Floor
Montgomery, AL 36130
Tel: (334)-242-7300

Alabama Department of Human Resources

Department of Human Resources
Civil Rights/Equal Employment Office
50 Ripley Street
Montgomery, AL 36130
Tel: (334) 242-1550

Alabama State Code

Alabama State Constitution

Search Alabama State Code and Constitution (ALISON)

Alabama State Legislature

Applies To
Service dogs for all disabilities (21-7-4)

Any person training a service dog; same access as for a person with a disability (21-7-3, 21-7-4)

Access denial is a misdemeanor (3-1-7, 13A-5-7, 21-7-5)


Section 1-1-3
"Blind person" defined; how blindness proved.

(a) As used in this Code or any statute of this state heretofore or hereafter enacted, unless the context requires a different meaning, the term "blind person" means a natural person who has no vision or whose vision with correcting glasses is so defective as to prevent the performance of ordinary activities for which eyesight is essential, or who has central visual acuity of 20/200 or less in the better eye with correcting glasses, or whose central visual acuity is more than 20/200 in the better eye with correcting glasses but whose peripheral field has contracted to such an extent that the widest diameter of the visual field subtends an angular distance no greater than 20 degrees.

(b) The condition of blindness may be proved by a blind person claiming any rights or benefits provided under any statute of this state by certificate of a duly licensed ophthalmologist or optometrist.

(c) Nothing herein contained shall prevent the Alabama State Department of Human Resources from establishing a different definition of blindness for use in determining eligibility for blind assistance under the program administered by it as provided for in Section 38-4-1, or from establishing procedures and qualifying personnel to determine the existence of blindness within such definition so established for such purpose or from reviewing any such determination so made to determine the correctness of such decision in its supervisory power in the administration of the blind assistance program.

Section 3-1-7
Refusal to permit dog guide to accompany blind person into place of public accommodation, etc.

No owner, lessee, proprietor, manager, superintendent, agent, or employee of any place of public accommodation, amusement or recreation, including, but not limited to, any inn, hotel, restaurant, eating establishment, barbershop, billiard parlor, store, public conveyance, theater, motion-picture house, public educational institution, or elevator shall refuse to permit a guide dog to accompany a blind person entering the place or making use of the accommodations available when the blind person is being led by the guide dog; if the guide dog is wearing a harness; and the blind person presents for inspection credentials issued by an accredited school for training guide dogs or the dog is being trained by a person employed by an accredited school for training guide dogs. Any person who violates this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction shall be fined an amount not to exceed fifty dollars ($50).

Section 3-7A-9
Quarantine of dog or cat which bites human being; destruction of animal and examination of head; certain acts of or omissions by owner unlawful; delivery of quarantine instructions to owner; report of results; canine corps and seeing eye dogs.


(g) Canine corps dogs and seeing eye dogs shall be exempt from the quarantine period where such exposure occurs in the line of duty and evidence of proper immunization against rabies is presented, but shall be examined immediately at the end of 10 days by a licensed veterinarian, who shall report the results of his examination to the appropriate health officer as previously authorized.

Section 13A-5-7
Sentences of imprisonment for misdemeanors and violations.

(a) Sentences for misdemeanors shall be a definite term of imprisonment in the county jail or to hard labor for the county, within the following limitations:

(1) For a Class A misdemeanor, not more than one year.

(2) For a Class B misdemeanor, not more than six months.

(3) For a Class C misdemeanor, not more than three months.

(b) Sentences for violations shall be for a definite term of imprisonment in the county jail, not to exceed 30 days.

Section 21-7-3
Right to use of public conveyances and transportation facilities, lodging places, places of public accommodation, etc.

The blind, the visually handicapped and the otherwise physically disabled are entitled to full and equal accommodations, advantages, facilities and privileges of all common carriers, airplanes, motor vehicles, railroad trains, motor buses, streetcars, boats or any other public conveyances or modes of transportation, hotels, lodging places, places of public accommodation, amusement or resort and other places to which the general public is invited, subject only to the conditions and limitations established by law and applicable alike to all persons.

Section 21-7-4
Right of person with a disability to be accompanied by service animal.

(a) For the purposes of this section, the term service animal means any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability.

(b) Every person with a disability, including a person who is totally or partially blind, hearing-impaired, or diagnosed on the autism spectrum shall have the right to be accompanied by a service animal in any public place, including a public or private school, and any of the places listed in Section 21-7-3. The person may not be required to pay an extra charge for the service animal.

(c) The work or tasks performed by a service animal must be directly related to the handler's disability.

(d) A person training a service animal shall be entitled to the same privileges granted to a person with a disability pursuant to subsection (b).

(e) In the case of a disabled child, including a child diagnosed on the autism spectrum, any aide assigned to assist the child shall be trained with the service animal in basic commands in order to assist the child as a team.

(f) This section does not relieve a person accompanied by a service animal from liability for any damages done to the premises or facilities by the service animal.

Section 21-7-5
Penalty for denial of or interference with enumerated rights.

Any person, firm or corporation, or the agent of any person, firm or corporation, who denies or interferes with admittance to or enjoyment of the public facilities enumerated in Sections 21-7-2 and 21-7-3 or otherwise interferes with the rights of a totally or partially blind or otherwise disabled person under Sections 21-7-2 through 21-7-4 shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

Section 21-7-6
Duty of drivers to pedestrians carrying cane or accompanied by guide dog.

The driver of a vehicle approaching a totally or partially blind pedestrian who is carrying a cane predominantly white or metallic in color, with or without a red tip, or using a guide dog, or a person employed by an accredited school for training guide dogs who provides notice through a sign or other method that he or she is training a dog as a guide dog shall take all necessary precautions prescribed by law to avoid injury to the blind pedestrian, and the dog trainer. Any driver who fails to take all necessary precautions shall be liable in damages for any injury caused the pedestrian, or the guide dog trainer.

Section 21-7-7
Rights of blind persons not using cane or guide dog; failure to use cane or guide dog not evidence of contributory negligence.

A totally or partially blind pedestrian not carrying a cane as described in Section 21-7-6 or any totally or partially blind person not using a guide dog in any of the places, accommodations or conveyances listed in Sections 21-7-2 and 21-7-3 shall have all of the rights and privileges conferred by law upon other persons, and the failure of a totally or partially blind pedestrian to carry such a cane or of a totally or partially blind person to use a guide dog in any such places, accommodations or conveyances shall not be held to constitute nor be evidence of contributory negligence.

Section 21-7-8
Employment by state, political subdivisions of state, public schools, etc.

It is the policy of this state that the blind, the visually handicapped and the otherwise physically disabled shall be employed in the state service, the service of the political subdivisions of the state, in the public schools and in all other employment supported in whole or in part by public funds on the same terms and conditions as the able-bodied, unless it is shown that the particular disability prevents the performance of the work involved.

Section 21-7-9
Right to housing accommodations.

(a) Blind persons, visually handicapped persons and other physically disabled persons shall be entitled to full and equal access, as are other members of the general public, to all housing accommodations offered for rent, lease or compensation in this state, subject to the conditions and limitations established by law and applicable alike to all persons.

(b) "Housing accommodations" means any real property or portion thereof which is used or occupied or is intended, arranged or designed to be used or occupied as the home, residence or sleeping place of one or more human beings, but shall not include any accommodations included within subsection (a) of this section or any single-family residence, the occupants of which rent, lease or furnish for compensation not more than one room therein.

(c) Nothing in this section shall require any person renting, leasing or providing for compensation real property to modify his property in any way or provide a higher degree of care for a blind person, visually handicapped person or other physically disabled person than for a person who is not physically disabled.

(d) Every totally or partially blind person who has a guide dog or who obtains a guide dog shall be entitled to full and equal access to all housing accommodations provided for in this section, and he shall not be required to pay extra compensation for such guide dog, but shall be liable for any damage done to the premises by such guide dog.

Section 21-7-10
Annual proclamation of White Cane Safety Day.

Each year, the Governor shall take suitable public notice of October 15 as White Cane Safety Day. He shall issue a proclamation in which:

(1) He comments upon the significance of the white cane;

(2) He calls upon the citizens of the state to observe the provisions of the White Cane Law and to take precautions necessary to the safety of the disabled;

(3) He reminds the citizens of the state of the policies with respect to the disabled herein declared and urges the citizens to cooperate in giving effect to them; and

(4) He emphasizes the need of the citizens to be aware of the presence of disabled persons in the community and to keep safe and functional for the disabled the streets, highways, sidewalks, walkways, public buildings, public facilities, other public places, places of public accommodation, amusement and resort and other places to which the public is invited, and to offer assistance to disabled persons upon appropriate occasions.

Last updated: 15MAR13