New York Cracks Down on Service Animal Fraud

A new law makes it unlawful for any person to knowingly affix to any dog any false or improper tag identifying the dog as a guide, service, therapy or hearing dog. While this law is helpful in dealing with fraudsters, it does not broaden the scope of permissible questions businesses and their employees may ask of patrons. Employees may ask only a limited number of questions to assess whether they are required to allow an alleged service animal to enter the premises. You may ask if the service animal is required because of a disability, but you can’t inquire about the disability. You can also ask about the work or task that the service animal has been trained to perform. You should not ask for medical documentation, require a special identification card or training documentation for the service animal or ask that the service animal perform the work or task.