Recent Court Rulings

Court Upholds FCC Ban on Exclusive Cable Agreements

June 23, 2009    

Facts: Trade associations representing cable operators and apartment building owners sued in federal court in Washington, D.C., to overturn an order of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) banning exclusivity agreements between cable companies and owners of multiple-unit buildings...

Site Manager's Applicant Screening Is Discriminatory

May 24, 2009    

Facts: An applicant for a rental unit in Tonawanda, N.Y., alleged that a site manager denied her housing because she has a family with children. After seeing a for-rent sign outside the Sherwood Terrace Apartments, the prospective renter spoke with the site manager by telephone and made...

Voucher Termination Denies Resident Due Process

May 24, 2009    

Facts: A housing authority terminated Section 8 rental assistance after a voucher holder was involved in a violent altercation with a neighbor. Although the voucher holder had not been convicted of any crime, he had been charged with two felony counts of aggravated assault. Believing the...

HUD Can't Stop City's Condemnation of Subsidized Property

May 24, 2009    

Facts: The City of Joliet, Ill., condemned a subsidized multifamily complex it believed to be so run-down that it constituted a public nuisance. The owners of Evergreen Terrace went to court to stop the city's condemnation, arguing that because the complex is a Section 8 development,...

Site Manager Fumbles Eviction Notice

April 23, 2009    

Facts: A site manager in North Carolina complained to police about possible drug activity in a unit. When police arrived, the resident consented to a search. After the police claimed to find drug paraphernalia and traces of drugs in the unit and wrote a citation against the resident, the...

Court Backs Agency's Denial of Benefits to Applicant

April 23, 2009    

Facts: An applicant for public housing in Omaha claimed that she had been unfairly denied participation in the program. The Omaha Housing Authority notified the applicant that she was ineligible for benefits based on the results of a criminal background check performed by the agency. The...

Housing Authority Not Responsible for Private Owner's Actions

April 23, 2009    

Facts: A New York resident used a Housing Choice Voucher provided by the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) to subsidize his rent for a unit in a privately owned apartment building in the Bronx. The resident, who claims he is disabled and unable to walk up or down steps, went to...

Agency Not Liable for Resident's Untimely Discrimination Claim

April 23, 2009    

Facts: A public housing resident sued the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA), claiming that the agency inadequately maintained garbage facilities at her building and created hazardous conditions for residents at the garbage collection site. The resident, who claims she is disabled,...

Federal Court Rejects Applicants' Disparate Impact Claim

March 25, 2009    

Facts: Seventeen Hasidic Jews who had applied for or lived in public housing operated by the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) challenged NYCHA's Tenant Selection and Assignment Plan (TSAP) as discriminatory in its treatment of Hasidic applicants at three public housing...

Owners Get Borough to Halt Discriminatory Enforcement

March 25, 2009    

Facts: Two rental apartment companies sued the Borough of Magnolia, N.J., to stop the Borough from enforcing its property rental ordinances in a manner that infringed on their rights under the Fair Housing Act.

In 2007, the Borough enacted Ordinance 11A, entitled “An...

Voucher Rejection Is Source-of-Income Discrimination

March 25, 2009    

Facts: Intending to sell its property, a Washington, D.C., owner stopped participating in the project-based Section 8 program after its HAP contract with HUD expired in 2004. Residents of the site received enhanced vouchers to remain in their units, but when they began offering these...

"Continuing" Fair Housing Violations Not Barred by Statute of Limitations

February 26, 2009    

Facts: Five fair housing organizations sued the builders and owners of 82 multifamily apartment complexes, alleging that the builders constructed the complexes in a manner that denied access to disabled persons, in violation of the Fair Housing Amendments Act. The builders and owners...