Coffee Bean

Bala Cynwyd, PA: (Jan-15-08) A class action lawsuit was brought against International Coffee and Tea, LLC, alleging that the company's Coffee Bean locations in California, denied accessibility to the hearing and visually impaired, thereby discrimination against them. Sources close to the case stated that the suit, pending in the United States District Court for the Central District of California, has reached a preliminary settlement.

Under the settlement agreement, Coffee Bean agreed to alter its stores with respect to access for people who use wheelchairs or scooters, and/or who are hearing and/or visually impaired. The company also agreed to pay $500,000 to a Damages Fund created for the benefit of the class. The defendants have also agreed to pay attorneys' fees and costs not to exceed $250,000. The class would include anyone who uses a wheelchair or a scooter, are hearing or visually impaired, and had been to a Coffee Bean location in the state of California, will patronize Coffee Bean, or would have patronized Coffee Bean but for access problems from October 24, 2005 through the end of the proposed settlement. Officials stated that those who had been to a Coffee Bean in California between October 24, 2005 and December 10, 2007, may be eligible for monetary recovery. [YAHOO: DISABILITY DISCRIMINATION]

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