Residential Real Estate Civil Rights

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City’s Handling of Application for Subdivision Approvals May Trigger Liability Under Fair Housing Act

The Federal Fair Housing Act (“FHA”) prohibits discrimination in the sale or rental of housing, including discriminatory land use decisions, on account of race, color, religion, sex, national origin or familial status. The...more

LIHTC discrimination suit filed against federal government

A lawsuit was recently filed alleging that the U.S. Department of Treasury (Treasury) and Office of Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) perpetuated racial segregation in the City of Dallas in their administration of the Low...more

Disparate impact cases against HUD: Illinois federal court issues decision; update on D.C. case

Because of their potential impact on the CFPB’s conclusion that the ECOA and Regulation B encompass disparate impact claims, we have been following two insurance industry lawsuits involving a challenge to HUD’s Federal...more

Social Media Concerns Potentially Affecting Arizona’s Real Estate Industry

A growing number of governmental authorities are cracking down on the use of social media with regard to commercial transactions. In Arizona, for example, legislation was proposed restricting an employer’s right to access...more

Treasury Department and OCC Sued for Discriminatory Conduct in LIHTC Program

A lawsuit was recently filed alleging that the U.S. Department of Treasury (Treasury) and Office of Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) perpetuated racial segregation in the City of Dallas in their administration of the Low...more

New York AG Sues Bank for Alleged Redlining

On September 2, the NY AG sued a regional bank claiming the bank engaged in unlawful discriminatory practices by intentionally avoiding offering mortgage loan products to predominately African-American neighborhoods in...more

NY Attorney General Files Redlining Lawsuit Alleging Mortgage Discrimination

The New York Attorney General filed a complaint this week in a New York federal court against a national bank headquartered in the state and its holding company alleging that the defendants violated the federal Fair Housing...more

More on the controversial affordable housing “Poor Door”

The New York Times has published more articles on “Poor Door” developments. As we reported here a few weeks ago, the term “Poor Door” refers to a separate entrance for a property’s subsidized tenants in a market rate housing...more

HUD PIH issues Equal Access Rule implementation guidance

HUD’s Office of Public and Indian Housing (PIH) recently issued PIH 2014-20 (PIH Notice) providing guidance to public housing authorities (PHAs), PHA affiliates and instrumentalities, mixed-finance owners and owners of...more

Recent HUD Enforcement Actions Highlight Risks of Loan Discrimination Against Those on Maternity/Paternity Leave

The U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (“HUD”) recently entered into settlement agreements with two lenders that allegedly discriminated against mortgage loan applicants based on their maternity leave status....more

Fair Housing Group Issues Annual Report

On August 13, the National Fair Housing Alliance (NFHA) published its annual fair housing report titled “Expanding Opportunity: Systemic Approaches to Fair Housing.” The paper summarizes 2013 fair housing enforcement actions...more

HUD Announces Disability Income Fair Housing Conciliation Agreement

On August 13, HUD announced that a nonbank mortgage lender agreed to pay $104,000 to resolve allegations that the lender’s underwriting practices resulted in discrimination against mortgage applicants who rely on disability...more

Update on certiorari petition in Texas FHA case

As we reported, the petition for certiorari filed in May 2014 by the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs (Texas DHCA) in Inclusive Communities Project v. Texas Dep’t of Housing and Community Affairs could give...more

Protection from Sexual-Orientation Discrimination in Pennsylvania

In Whitewood v. Wolf, a federal judge struck down a Pennsylvania law that limited the definition of marriage to that between “one man and one woman.” In his momentous opinion, Judge Jones also declared that classifications...more

HUD provides guidance on relocation for public housing conversions under RAD

HUD recently released guidance on relocation requirements for Rental Assistance Demonstration (“RAD”) conversions of public housing and moderate rehabilitation projects....more

HUD Announces Two Maternity Leave Fair Housing Agreements

On July 1, HUD announced a conciliation agreement with a California mortgage lender, pursuant to which the lender will pay $48,000 to resolve allegations that it violated the Fair Housing Act when it denied or delayed...more

CFPB Issues Guidance On Ensuring Equal Treatment For Married Same-Sex Couples

On July 8, the CFPB released guidance designed to ensure equal treatment for legally married same-sex couples in response to the Supreme Court’s decision in United States v. Windsor, 133 S. Ct. 2675 (2013). ...more

Miami Hits JPMorgan with Lawsuit over Discriminatory Lending Practices

The city of Miami recently sued JPMorgan Chase & Co. in Florida federal court alleging that JPMorgan violated the Federal Fair Housing Act (“FHA”) by engaging in a “continuing pattern” of discriminatory mortgage lending...more

California Federal Judge Allows Second Los Angeles Fair Housing Case To Proceed

On June 9, the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California denied a mortgage lender’s motion to dismiss the City of Los Angeles’s Fair Housing Act suit, the second such denial by the same judge in recent weeks....more

CFPB to issue whitepaper on methodology for identifying auto finance discrimination and consider use of advisory opinions

While Director Cordray’s appearance at the House Financial Services Committee’s hearing on the CFPB’s fifth Semi-Annual Report yesterday was accompanied by the usual dose of political theater, his testimony did yield the...more

“Predatory Lending” Claims by Cities and Counties Against Financial Institutions Escalate in 2014

Cities and counties that have experienced increased foreclosure and vacancy rates in the aftermath of the housing market crash of 2007-2008, perhaps emboldened by recent court decisions, have recently filed several new...more

Another insurance industry trade association group challenges the HUD disparate impact rule

We have been following the lawsuit in federal district court in D.C. in which two insurance industry trade associations have challenged the HUD disparate impact rule. The complaint in the D.C. action, which was commenced in...more

House 2015 DOJ appropriations bill prohibits DOJ use of disparate impact in FHA enforcement actions

The FY 2015 Commerce, Justice, Science Appropriations Act (H.R. 4660) passed by the House of Representatives includes an amendment (H. Amdt. 768) that prohibits the U.S. Department of Justice from using any of the funding...more

Another Supreme Court disparate impact case?

The U.S. Supreme Court could have its third opportunity since 2012 to provide clarity with respect to disparate impact claims under the Fair Housing Act and (by analogy) the Equal Credit Opportunity Act. After losing on...more

Fees Associated With Foreclosure Process May Not be Imposed On Servicemembers Protected By The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act

The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act ("SCRA") prohibits nonjudicial foreclosure proceedings during, or one year after, a servicemember's military service. In Brewster v. Sun Trust Mortgage Inc., 742 F.3d 876 (9th Cir. 2014),...more

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