Sunday, August 23, 2009

Fair Housing Discrimination-Familial Status

Be careful when dealing with rules concerning children; for example pool rules should not prohibit infants, but instead require "incontinent persons" to wear leakproof pants; if the pool is x deep a rule requirung that anybody less than that number of inches tall must be accompanied by soemone taller than that to avoid familial status discrimination.

From the Community Association Management Insider:

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) recently announced that it is charging an Atlanta condominium association, a local real estate company, and its agent with housing discrimination for refusing to sell to families with children.

The Fair Housing Act prohibits a housing provider from discriminating against families with children unless the housing meets certain requirements for housing for older persons.

According to the charge, the agent had advertised a condominium for sale and conditioned the sale to those without children. A fair housing agency then sent testers to inquire about the condo. When a tester told the real estate agent that she had children, the agent allegedly told her that no children were allowed and refused to show her the unit. During HUD’s investigation, the agent admitted that several prospective buyers with children under the age of 14 inquired about the property and she told them about the restriction. The property was eventually sold to a single female without children.

The HUD charges will be heard by a United States Administrative Law Judge unless any party to the charge elects to have the case heard in federal district court. If an administrative law judge finds after a hearing that discrimination has occurred, he or she may award damages to the complainant for its loss as a result of the discrimination. The judge may also order injunctive relief and other equitable relief to deter further discrimination, as well as payment of attorney fees.

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