disability: What Housing Providers Need to Know About Service Animals - 06/14/10 04:25 AM

Under the Fair Housing Act, a housing provider cannot refuse housing to someone who is disabled because of their disability. Just as important, the law requires housing providers to accommodate a person’s disability by changing or modifying a rule or policy or practice when doing so is necessary to give the disabled person equal opportunity to use and enjoy his or her unit.
Under the Fair Housing Act, a housing provider who has established a "no pet" policy must allow a disabled resident to keep a service animal as a reasonable accommodation. The housing provider must allow the disabled resident … (2 comments)

disability: Types of Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities Prohibited by the Fair Housing Act - 09/29/09 01:56 AM

The goal of the Fair Housing Act is to ensure “no person shall be subjected to discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status or national origin in the sale, rental or advertising of dwellings, in the provision of brokerage services, or in the availability of residential real-estate related transactions.” With respect to people with disabilities, the Act serves to:
Give people with disabilities opportunities to choose where they want to live; Assure that reasonable accommodations and reasonable modifications are made so that a person with a disability can secure and use housing as fully as a person … (1 comments)

disability: A Few Examples of Illegal Housing Practices Against Persons with Disabilities Under the Fair Housing Act - 05/30/09 04:41 AM

Here is a little reminder for everyone about their obligations under the Fair Housing act with respect to people with disabilities.  The following are a few examples of illegal housing practices against persons with disabilities under the Fair Housing Act:
Refusing to rent or sell or otherwise making unavailable to an individual with a disability a dwelling unit, because of the buyer’s or renter’s disability; Imposing different terms and conditions on the sale or rental of a dwelling unit due to the buyer’s or renter’s disability; Coercing, intimidating or threatening a person for exercising his or her rights under the … (5 comments)

disability: Types of Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities Prohibited by the Fair Housing Act - 05/30/09 04:38 AM

The goal of the Fair Housing Act is to ensure “no person shall be subjected to discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status or national origin in the sale, rental or advertising of dwellings, in the provision of brokerage services, or in the availability of residential real-estate related transactions.” With respect to people with disabilities, the Act serves to:
Give people with disabilities opportunities to choose where they want to live; Assure that reasonable accommodations and reasonable modifications are made so that a person with a disability can secure and use housing as fully as a person … (0 comments)

disability: When does a housing provider know that a reasonable accommodation is needed? - 05/30/09 03:12 AM

The duty to accommodate arises only when the housing provider has knowledge that a disability exists and that an accommodation may be required for the disabled person to use and enjoy the housing. Here are key points:
The applicant or resident must make a request for an accommodation. The request does not need to mention fair housing or use the words “reasonable accommodation.” The request should describe the accommodation and explain the disability-related need for the requested action. For example: A resident who becomes disabled may request a transfer to a ground floor apartment because climbing the stairs has become … (0 comments)

disability: Fair Housing Lawsuit Settled for $130,000 + Retrofitting costs - 05/21/09 04:47 AM
Here is another example of a recent settlement of a Fair Housing Act lawsuit brought by the United States Department of Justice (“DOJ”). I try to post case summaries in order to provide timely updates to real estate agents and brokers about the "dos and don'ts" under the Fair Housing Act, since fair housing is such an important issue.
Yesterday afternoon (Wednesday, May 20, 2009), the DOJ settled a Fair Housing Act lawsuit that was brought against the developers, architects, and professional engineers responsible for building four multifamily housing complexes in Spokane, Washington. The lawsuit alleged that the defendants designed and … (0 comments)

disability: Fair Housing Lawsuit Filed Against Town - 05/20/09 06:18 AM
Here is another example of a recent Fair Housing Act lawsuit brought by the United States Department of Justice (“DOJ”). I try to post case summaries in order to provide timely updates to real estate agents and brokers about the "dos and don'ts" under the Fair Housing Act, since fair housing is such an important issue.
Yesterday afternoon (Tuesday, May 19, 2009), the DOJ filed a Fair Housing Act lawsuit against the town of Garner, North Carolina, and the town’s board of adjustment alleging that they violated the Fair Housing Act when they refused to allow up to eight men recovering … (4 comments)

disability: Fair Housing Act Lawsuit Filed Today Alleging Disability-Based Housing Discrimination - 05/07/09 02:04 AM

Here is another example of a recent Fair Housing Act lawsuit brought by the United States Department of Justice (“DOJ”). I try to post case summaries in order to provide timely updates to real estate agents and brokers about the "dos and don'ts" under the Fair Housing Act, since fair housing is such an important issue.
This morning (Thursday, May 7, 2009), the DOJ filed a lawsuit against Equity Homes Inc, PBR LLC, BBR LLC and Shane Hartung in federal court alleging that the defendants failed to provide accessible features required by the Fair Housing Act at six separate multi-family … (1 comments)

disability: "Fundamental Allteration” under the Fair Housing Act - 03/28/09 05:24 AM

What is a “fundamental alteration” of a housing provider’s operations with regard to Fair Housing Act reasonable accommodation requests?
A “fundamental alteration” is a modification that alters the essential nature of a housing provider’s operations.
Example: A tenant has a severe mobility impairment that substantially limits his ability to walk. He asks his housing provider to transport him to the grocery store and assist him with his grocery shopping as a reasonable accommodation to his disability. The provider does not provide any transportation or shopping services for its tenants, so granting this request would require a fundamental alteration in the … (0 comments)

disability: Are there any instances when a housing provider can deny a request for a reasonable accommodation without violating the Fair Housing Act? - 03/28/09 05:04 AM

Are there any instances when a housing provider can deny a request for a reasonable accommodation without violating the Fair Housing Act?
Yes. A housing provider can deny a request for a reasonable accommodation if the request was not made by or on behalf of a person with a disability or if there is no disability-related need for the accommodation. In addition, a request for a reasonable accommodation may be denied if providing the accommodation is not reasonable (i.e., if it would impose an undue financial and administrative burden on the housing provider or it would fundamentally alter the nature … (0 comments)

disability: When does a housing provider know that a reasonable accommodation is needed? - 03/24/09 04:15 AM

The duty to accommodate arises only when the housing provider has knowledge that a disability exists and that an accommodation may be required for the disabled person to use and enjoy the housing. Here are key points:
The applicant or resident must make a request for an accommodation. The request does not need to mention fair housing or use the words “reasonable accommodation.” The request should describe the accommodation and explain the disability-related need for the requested action. For example: A resident who becomes disabled may request a transfer to a ground floor apartment because climbing the stairs has become … (0 comments)

disability: Do Housing Providers Need to Have Formal Procedures in Place for Processing Fair Housing Requests? - 03/24/09 04:08 AM

QUESTION:  Must a housing provider adopt formal procedures for processing requests for a reasonable accommodation?
No.  The Fair Housing Act does not require that a housing provider adopt any formal procedures for reasonable accommodation requests.  However, having formal procedures may aid individuals with disabilities in making requests for reasonable accommodations and may aid housing providers in assessing those requests so that there are no misunderstandings as to the nature of the request, and, in the event of later disputes, provide records to show that the requests received proper consideration.
A housing provider may not refuse a request, however, because the … (2 comments)

disability: Approval Needed Before Making Reasonable Modification of Rental Unit - 03/24/09 03:44 AM

QUESTION:  Does a person with a disability have to have the housing provider’s approval before making a reasonable modification to the dwelling?
Yes. A person with a disability must have the housing provider’s approval before making the modification. However, if the person with a disability meets the requirements under the Fair Housing Act for a reasonable modification and provides the relevant documents and assurances, the housing provider cannot deny the request.
For more information about reasonable modifications, please see these other postings:  What is a “Reasonable Modification” for Purposes of the Fair Housing Act? and The Difference Between a "Reasonable … (0 comments)

disability: Does an Apartment Complex with a Clearly Posted "No Pets" Policy Need to Allow Tenants with Service Animals? - 03/20/09 12:42 PM

Does an apartment complex with a clearly posted "no pets" policy need to allow tenants with service animals?
This is a very common question in real estate, and something that every real estate professional should know.  This issue arises almost daily in conjunction with condominium rules and regulations, apartment complex rules, and generally to all rental housing, many of which have "no pets" policies.
The answer is, yes.  A service animal is not a pet.  Federal fair housing laws require landlords and property managers to modify their "no pets" policies to allow the use of a service animal by a … (5 comments)

disability: What is Considerd a Service Animal Under Fair Housing Laws - 03/20/09 12:28 PM

Federal fair housing laws define a "service animal" as any guide dog, signal dog, or other animal individually trained to provide assistance to an individual with a disability. If they meet this definition, animals are considered service animals under the law regardless of whether they have been licensed or certified by a state or local government.
Service animals perform some of the functions and tasks that the individual with a disability cannot perform for him or herself. Guide dogs are one type of service animal, used by some individuals who are blind. This is the type of service animal with … (0 comments)

disability: Is a request for a parking space because of a physical disability a reasonable accommodation or a reasonable modification? - 03/14/09 05:50 AM

Courts have traditionally treated requests for parking spaces as requests for a reasonable accommodation and have placed the responsibility for providing the parking space on the housing provider, even if provision of an accessible or assigned parking space results in some cost to the provider.  For example, courts have required a housing provider to provide an assigned space even though the housing provider had a policy of not assigning parking spaces or had a waiting list for available parking. However, housing providers may not require persons with disabilities to pay extra fees as a condition of receiving accessible parking spaces.
(0 comments)

disability: Who is Entitled to a Reasonable Modification Under the Fair Housing Act? - 03/14/09 05:02 AM
Persons who meet the Fair Housing Act’s definition of “person with a disability” may be entitled to a reasonable modification under the Act. However, there must be an identifiable relationship, or nexus, between the requested modification and the individual’s disability. If no such nexus exists, then the housing provider may refuse to allow the requested modification.
Example 1: A tenant, whose arthritis impairs the use of her hands and causes her substantial difficulty in using the doorknobs in her apartment, wishes to replace the doorknobs with levers. Since there is a relationship between the tenant’s disability and the requested modification and … (3 comments)

disability: What kinds of information, if any, may a housing provider request from a person with an obvious or known disability who is requesting a reasonable accommodation or reasonable modification? - 03/07/09 03:28 AM

Question:  What kinds of information, if any, may a housing provider request from a person with an obvious or known disability who is requesting a reasonable accommodation or reasonable modification?
A housing provider is entitled to obtain information that is necessary to evaluate whether a requested reasonable accommodation or reasonable modification may be necessary because of a disability. If a person’s disability is obvious, or otherwise known to the provider, and if the need for the requested accommodation or modification is also readily apparent or known, then the housing provider may not request any additional information about the requester’s disability … (4 comments)

disability: Who qualifies as a person with a disability under the Fair Housing Act? - 03/07/09 02:04 AM
The following is a summary of what it takes to qualify as a "person with a disability" under the Fair Housing Act.
The Fair Housing Act defines a person with a disability to include (1) individuals with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities; (2) individuals who are regarded as having such an impairment; and (3) individuals with a record of such an impairment.  The Act defines certain terms as follows:
The term “physical or mental impairment” includes, but is not limited to, such diseases and conditions as orthopedic, visual, speech and hearing impairments, … (0 comments)

disability: Types of Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities Prohibited by the Fair Housing Act - 03/07/09 01:46 AM
The goal of the Fair Housing Act is to ensure “no person shall be subjected to discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status or national origin in the sale, rental or advertising of dwellings, in the provision of brokerage services, or in the availability of residential real-estate related transactions.” With respect to people with disabilities, the Act serves to:
Give people with disabilities opportunities to choose where they want to live; Assure that reasonable accommodations and reasonable modifications are made so that a person with a disability can secure and use housing as fully as a person without … (0 comments)

 
Jason Rose, www.123ConEd.com (123 ConEd LLC -- Michigan real estate continuing education) Rainmaker large

Jason Rose

www.123ConEd.com

Farmington Hills, MI

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123 ConEd LLC -- Michigan real estate continuing education

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