38 CFR 18.422 - Existing facilities.
(a) Accessibility. A recipient shall operate each program or activity to which this part applies so that when each part is viewed in its entirety it is readily accessible to handicapped persons. This paragraph does not require a recipient to make each of its existing facilities or every part of a facility accessible to and usable by handicapped persons.
(b) Methods. A recipient may comply with the requirement of paragraph (a) of this section through such measures as redesign of equipment, reassignment of classes or other services to accessible buildings, assignment of aids to beneficiaries, home visits, delivery of health, or other social services at alternate accessible sites, alteration of existing facilities and construction of new facilities in conformance with § 18.423 or any other methods that make its program or activity accessible to handicapped persons. A recipient is not required to make structural changes in existing facilities where other methods are effective in making its programs or activities readily accessible to handicapped persons. In choosing among available methods for complying with paragraph (a) of this section, a recipient shall give priority to methods that serve handicapped persons in the most integrated setting appropriate.
(c) Small health, welfare or other social service providers, and recipients that operate other than educational programs or activities. If a recipient with fewer than fifteen employees finds after consultation with a handicapped person seeking its services that there is no method of complying with paragraph (a) of this section other than making a significant alteration in its existing facilities, the recipient may, as an alternative, refer the qualified handicapped person to other providers whose services are accessible. Where referrals are necessary, transportation costs shall not exceed costs to and from recipients' programs or activities.
(d) Time period. A recipient shall comply with paragraph (a) of this section within 60 days of the effective date of this part except that when structural changes in facilities are necessary, these changes shall be made as soon as practicable, but not later than three years after the effective date of this part.
(e) Transition plan. If structural changes to facilities are necessary to meet the requirements of paragraph (a) of this section, a recipient shall develop a transition plan within six months of the effective date of this part setting forth the steps necessary to complete such change. The plan shall be developed with the assistance of interested persons, including handicapped persons or organizations representing handicapped persons. A copy of the transition plan shall be available for public inspection. The plan shall, at a minimum:
(1) Identify physical obstacles in the recipient's facilities that limit the accessibility of its program or activity to handicapped persons;
(2) Describe in detail the methods that will be used to make the facilities accessible;
(3) Specify the schedule for taking the steps necessary to achieve full accessibility under paragraph (a) of this section and, if the time period of the transition plan is longer than one year, identify steps that will be taken during each year of the transition period; and
(4) Indicate the person responsible for implementation of the plan.
(f) Notice. The recipient shall implement procedures to ensure that interested persons, including persons with impaired vision or hearing, can obtain information concerning the existence and location of services, activities, and facilities that are accessible to and usable by handicapped persons.