Recent Court Rulings

Residents' Lead-Paint Grievances Suited for State Court

April 13, 2018    

Facts: A group of residents sued the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) in federal court for familial discrimination and allegedly depriving them of their property right to a habitable residence free from dangerous conditions. They asked the court to appoint an independent...

PHA Didn't Violate Constitution with Bedbug Eradication Efforts

April 13, 2018    

Facts: A group of residents filed a class action lawsuit against a PHA. The residents claimed that the PHA’s actions with regard to the site’s bedbug infestation amounted to a violation of their due process rights. They claimed that the PHA’s extermination...

PHA Not Liable for Wrongful Death

April 13, 2018    

Facts: In March 2012, a resident and her four children died after a fire spread from the kitchen of their apartment. The estate of the deceased sued the local PHA for negligence and wrongful death. They claimed that the PHA failed to ensure that “properly working and...

Resident Didn't File Retaliation Claim in Time

March 15, 2018    

Facts: A former resident sued the local PHA and its property manager for retaliating against her in violation of the First Amendment for participating in tenant advocacy activities. The resident was involved in organizing tenants at the public housing site from 2010 until 2012...

Owner Not Liable for Fraud and Concealment

March 15, 2018    

Facts: A resident sued an owner for fraud and concealment based on alleged misrepresentations made when the resident was a prospective tenant looking to rent a unit at the site. In November 2008, at the time the resident was looking at an apartment, he “made several...

Owner Not Liable for Disability Discrimination

February 15, 2018    

Facts: A site manager notified an applicant that her application for housing wasn’t accepted “because a credit check has revealed that [she] ha[s] a negative credit history[,]” which was “verified through TransUnion.” The credit report referenced in the...

PHA Can Void Resident’s Tenancy for Criminal Activity

February 15, 2018    

Facts: One night, a site manager observed a resident’s guests arriving at the site in an impaired state, and unwilling (or unable) to cooperate with security. An on-site police officer who served as the community liaison to the local PHA, conducted an investigation into...

Fire Department May Be Liable for Household Members’ Deaths

February 15, 2018    

The administrator of an estate of four family members who died in an apartment fire sued the local PHA and the fire department for negligence. The apartment had only a single point of ingress and egress, namely, a second-floor door that opened onto a porch and an external staircase. Because the...

Site Owner Entitled to Property Tax Exemption

January 19, 2018    

Facts: A nonprofit corporation owns a site for the elderly that was financed by HUD. With the financing, the corporation entered into a Project Rental Assistance Contract with HUD in which the corporation agreed to provide housing for low-income elderly persons at the property,...

PHA Didn't Violate Resident's Due Process Rights

December 14, 2017    

Facts: A public housing resident sued the local PHA for initiating eviction proceedings against him without first providing him with a grievance hearing or due process. Under his lease, based on the resident’s reported income (which was zero), his initial monthly rent was...

HUD Prevented from Abating Section 8 HAP Contract

December 14, 2017    

Facts: A resident association of a Section 8 site asked a court to set aside HUD’s decision to abate the site’s Housing Assistance Payments (HAP) contract. When HUD abates and terminates a project-based Section 8 contract, residents living at the property are given...

Owner Can Deny Resident's Accommodation Request

November 21, 2017    

Facts: A Section 8 resident’s son and his dog lived with the resident. The dog never attacked another person or pet, but it did display aggressive behavior towards other dogs and people—including lunging, flaring up, rearing on its hind feet, and baring its teeth. In...

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