Fair Housing Act (FHA)

News & Analysis as of

Owners and Developers Beware: Federal Law Preempts Your Remedies Against Design Professionals for ADA Violations

Recent years have seen a proliferation of lawsuits against building owners and businesses for violation of the accessibility requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Not only restaurants, but also hotels,...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 Issues Guidance Regarding the Application of Fair Housing Act Standards to the Use of Criminal Records

On April 4, HUD issued guidance deploying a disparate impact analysis with respect to the Fair Housing Act’s application to the use of criminal history by those who come under the Fair Housing Act, and in particular by...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

5 Things I Learned From APA’s National Conference in Phoenix

I just returned from the American Planning Association’s National Conference in Phoenix, Arizona. I look forward to this conference every year to get together with planners from across the country, eat some local food, and...more

HUD Releases Guidance on Fair Housing and Criminal Screening in Private Housing

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) issued new guidance on April 4, 2016, on the use of criminal conviction records by housing providers in screening applicants. The guidance advises housing providers...more

HUD Determines That Blanket Bans of Ex-Offenders is Illegal Under the Fair Housing Act

On April 4, 2016, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (“HUD”) issued guidance on its interpretation of how the Fair Housing Act applies to housing providers’ policies that ban residents with criminal records....more

HUD publishes new Fair Housing guidance on criminal background checks

On Monday, HUD published new guidance for landlords conducting criminal background checks as a condition of renting housing. This guidance is applicable to all providers or operators of housing and real estate related...more

Financial Services Weekly News - March 2016 #4

Regulatory Developments - FHA Revises Loan-Level Certification Form - On March 15, the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) announced changes to its loan-level certification form. The changes resulted from concerns...more

Sixth Circuit Affirms Dismissal of $2.3 Billion FCA Case Due to Prior Public Disclosure

Last week, in U.S. ex rel. Advocates for Basic Legal Equality, Inc. (ABLE) v. U.S. Bank, the Sixth Circuit affirmed the dismissal of a False Claims Act (FCA) suit against U.S. Bank because the conduct alleged by the qui tam...more

HUD Reaches $2.8 Million Settlement Over Redlining Allegations

On February 29, HUD announced an agreement with a Kansas City-based bank over its alleged redlining practices against African-American mortgage applicants. Two fair housing organizations (Complainants) filed separate...more

Update on the U.S. Supreme Court’s Inclusive Communities Decision

As previously reported on this blog, the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project, Inc., 135 S. Ct. 2507 (2015) adopted a burden-shifting approach to...more

West Coast Real Estate Update: Feb. 2016 #4

ASTM Updates Property Condition Assessments Standard - The American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) published at the end of 2015 the latest version of the Standard Guide for Property Condition Assessments:...more

HUD Announces $1.9 Million Settlement with Memphis-Based Bank over Alleged FHA Discrimination

On February 1, HUD announced a $1.9 million settlement with a Memphis-based bank to resolve alleged violations of the Fair Housing Act. Specifically, the complainant alleged that the bank “was responsible for discriminatory...more

Fair Lending Year in Review – 2015

2015 was an action-packed year for fair lending, including a long-anticipated Supreme Court decision on disparate-impact claims under the Fair Housing Act (“FHA”), record-breaking redlining settlements, a new round of...more

DOJ Settles Action Alleging Bank Discriminated Against Disability Income Recipients

The U.S. Department of Justice recently entered into a consent order with Evolve Bank & Trust to settle charges that the bank discriminated against mortgage loan applicants on the basis of disability and receipt of public...more

Yeshiva Sues New Jersey Township for Religious Discrimination

Yeshiva Gedola Na’os Yaakov, Inc. (the “Yeshiva”) has filed a federal lawsuit against the Township of Ocean, New Jersey and the Township’s Zoning Board of Adjustment following the denial of an application to develop a yeshiva...more

DOJ and Kent State University reach $145,000 Fair Housing settlement

Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and Kent State University (KSU) settled claims of discrimination under the Fair Housing Act (FHA) related to the use of emotional support animals in university housing....more

DOJ Reaches $145,000 Settlement Over Access of Emotional Support Animal to University Housing

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and Kent State University (KSU) reached a $145,000 settlement over claims of discrimination under the Fair Housing Act (FHA) on January 4, 2016. In 2014, DOJ initiated a lawsuit against...more

Redlining Cases In 2015 And A New Discrimination Standard

Limited access to mortgage credit for credit-impaired and low- and moderate-income (and, therefore, disproportionately minority) borrowers has become a significant public policy challenge in the post-financial crisis era....more

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