Blind Persons Law and Legal Definition

The definition of a blind person varies from state to state. One state defines a blind person as "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."

A blind person is covered under the American with Disabilities Act, which prevents discrimination against such persons based upon their blindness and prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in employment, housing, education, and access to public services. The ADA further requires that reasonable accommodation be made so as to provide individuals with disabilities equal opportunities.

Legally blind means that you are considered blind for the purposes of the relevant law. Definitions of legal blindness varies by entity, but the following is an example of the Nebraska Department of Education's regulations regarding legal blindness:

  • "Visual Impairment: Legally Blind
  • 04M2b(1)In order to be verified as a child with a visual impairment: legally blind, the evaluation shall include the analysis and documentation of:
  • 04M2b(1)(a)A visual acuity of 20/200 or less in the better eye after correction or a contiguous field restricted to 20 degrees or less as stated in a signed report by a licensed ophthalmologist or optometrist;
  • 04M2b(1)(b)The need for adapted curriculum, methods, materials, and equipment, or any combination thereof for learning; and
  • 04M2b(1)(c)The educational significance of the visual impairment including:
  • 04M2b(1)(c)(i)Documentation of behaviors which appear to impede the child's overall functioning as observed in appropriate settings by someone other than the child's classroom teacher; and
  • 04M2b(1)(c)(ii)Deficiencies in one or more of the following areas: activities of daily living, social interaction, academic achievement, performance, or orientation and mobility."