Residential Real Estate Civil Rights

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High Court Inclusive Communities Ruling: 1 Year Later

Last summer the U.S. Supreme Court issued its much-anticipated decision in Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project,[1] holding that disparate impact discrimination claims are...more

HUD’s Newly Published Guidelines and Warnings Regarding a Landlord’s Use of Criminal Records in Screening Potential Tenants

This article provides information in response to various questions that I (Jodie McDougal) have received over the past several months regarding the April 4, 2016, Memorandum (the “Memorandum”) published by the U.S. Department...more

Home Owners Associations: Beware of the Fair Housing Act When Enforcing Pet Prohibitions and Restrictions

Many planned communities, townhome communities, and condominiums (collectively, "Associations" since they are nearly universally governed by one) have restrictions that either prohibit or limit the number, size, and type of...more

Sellers of Certain Connecticut Real Estate Required to Attach Housing Disclosure Form To Purchase Agreements

On May 16, 2016, the Connecticut General Assembly enacted Public Act 16-16, which requires sellers of Connecticut real estate consisting of two or more units to attach to purchase agreements, options and leases which contain...more

HUD’s Approach to Disparate Impact Remains Under Fire—Lending Trade Associations Weigh In

K&L Gates LLP recently presented the views of the major banking and lending trade associations, as amici curiae, in a federal challenge to HUD’s Fair Housing Act disparate-impact rule. The views expressed are those of the...more

CFPB Relies on “Mystery Shoppers” in BancorpSouth Mortgage Discrimination Settlement

CFPB “mystery shoppers,” along with secret recordings, were part of the CFPB’s factual allegations in a recent mortgage discrimination settlement. The DOJ and CFPB announced a settlement with BancorpSouth Bank to resolve...more

Banks Appeal Fair Housing Act Case to Supreme Court

In September 2015, the Eleventh Circuit ruled that the City of Miami had sufficient standing to sue Bank of America and Wells Fargo over lending practices that were alleged to be racially discriminatory. On June 28, 2016,...more

Diversity assessment and remedial measures required by CFPB consent order

On June 29, 2016, BancorpSouth Bank announced a proposed settlement and consent order with the CFPB and the U.S. Department of Justice of charges that the bank’s mortgage lending practices violated the Equal Credit...more

CFPB Supervisory Highlights – January 2016 to April 2016

On June 30, 2016, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) released the twelfth edition of its Supervisory Highlights report (“Report”), which focused on supervision work completed between January and April 2016. The...more

CFPB and DOJ settle fair lending claims involving allegations of redlining, discretionary underwriting and pricing, and overt...

The CFPB and DOJ recently announced a proposed consent order with BancorpSouth Bank to settle charges that the bank’s mortgage lending practices violated the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Credit Opportunity Act....more

CFPB and DOJ Settle Fair Lending Claims Involving Allegations of Redlining, Discretionary Underwriting and Pricing, and Overt...

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) recently announced a proposed consent order with BancorpSouth Bank to settle charges that the bank’s mortgage lending practices violated the...more

CFPB and DOJ Propose $10.6 Million Settlement in Discriminatory Lending Action

On June 29, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CPPB) and Department of Justice (DOJ) announced a joint enforcement action against a regional bank for alleged discriminatory mortgage lending in violation of the Equal...more

SCOTUS Agrees to Review City of Miami Fair Housing Claim

The Supreme Court has agreed to review a discriminatory lending case brought by the City of Miami against Wells Fargo & Co. and Bank of America Corp. At issue is whether a city government is permitted to bring a suit seeking...more

CFPB Announces $10.6M Settlement with Mississippi Bank over Redlining

In a case that demonstrates the scope of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (“CFPB’s”) reach, the CFPB and Department of Justice (“DOJ”) have entered into a settlement with BancorpSouth totaling almost $10,600,000...more

The Supreme Court - June 2016 #8

The Supreme Court granted certiorari in eight cases last week: Bank of America Corp. v. Miami, No. 15-1111; Wells Fargo & Co. v. Miami, 15-1112: (1) Whether the term “aggrieved” in the Fair Housing Act imposes a...more

Department of Housing and Urban Development Announces Settlement with National Bank over Alleged Discriminatory Lending Practices

On June 8, 2016, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced it entered into a settlement agreement with a national bank over allegations the bank engaged in discriminatory lending practices in violation...more

CFPB Examinations and Investigations: Defense Strategies and Best Practices

The pursuit of examinations and enforcement actions by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has created new challenges for entities that provide consumer financial products and services. Given the CFPB’s broad...more

Increasing Legal Scrutiny of Website Accessibility in the Real Estate Industry

From fair housing laws to licensing requirements, the real estate industry is accustomed to navigating various legal constraints and requirements. However, as a result of current ambiguity in the law, class action lawsuits...more

Not Starry-Eyed: Massachusetts Imposes Rigorous Standard on Fair Housing Disparate Impact Claims in Burbank Apartments

The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (“SJC”) recently answered the question of whether the Massachusetts anti-discrimination statute Chapter 151B recognizes a disparate impact theory of discrimination. In Burbank...more

Landmark Discrimination Case: Fair Housing Act Thwarts NIMBYs - Avenue 6E Investments, LLC v. City of Yuma (March 25, 2016)

Why It Matters: The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a decision in favor of the City of Yuma, Arizona, and concluded instead that there was sufficient evidence to present to a jury that the City had rejected the...more

Housing and Criminal Background Checks

HUD has issued guidance indicating it will review of the use of criminal background checks in determining qualifications for residents in housing. HUD is following the lead of the EEOC concerning criminal convictions and...more

Industry trade groups’ renewed challenge to HUD disparate impact rule could yield helpful precedent for ECOA cases

The D.C. district court recently granted two industry trade associations whose members sell homeowners insurance leave to file an amended complaint in their lawsuit challenging the Fair Housing Act (FHA) disparate impact rule...more

Massachusetts High Court Examines Disparate Impact Theory in Light of Recent Supreme Court Decision

A ruling last week by Massachusetts' highest state court demonstrates courts' vigorous examination of disparate impact housing claims in light of recent judicial guidance, as well as the type of proactive measures property...more

Industry Trade Groups Renew Challenge to HUD Disparate Impact Rule

Two industry trade associations whose members sell homeowners insurance have been granted leave to file an amended complaint in their lawsuit challenging the Fair Housing Act (FHA) disparate impact rule (Rule) adopted by the...more

HUD Releases Guidance on Criminal Background Checks by Housing Providers

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) on April 4, 2016, issued guidance addressing Fair Housing Act liability regarding the use of criminal background checks or screenings in housing determinations....more

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