HUD Settles Disability Discrimination and Retaliation Case

HUD recently announced that it had settled a disability discrimination case against the owner and manager of a 500-unit site in Illinois. The resolution required the owner to pay $255,000 to settle claims that it violated the fair housing laws by failing to meet the needs of individuals with disabilities and then by retaliating against a resident with a disability because the resident requested a reasonable accommodation.

The allegations that made up the complaint involved two individuals with disabilities who claimed that they were unable to use their housing because management assigned a mobility-impaired resident to a third-floor unit in a building lacking an elevator and then threatened to evict the resident because she had her adult daughter who was acting as a caregiver living with her in the apartment.

Under the terms of the settlement, the owner must develop a new reasonable accommodation policy and will conduct a needs assessment of current residents who require accessible housing to determine if their needs are being met. The agreement also includes a provision to ensure that 5 percent of the site's units are handicap accessible.