Saturday, April 18, 2015

Another Landlord, Property Manager Suffer 'Sting' By Fair Housing Testers; Get Whacked For $50K+ In Damages, Tenant's Legal Fees In Suit Alleging Discrimination Against Prospective "Section 8" Voucher-Holding Renter Who Proposed To Use Housing Subsidy Towards Rental Payments

In Buffalo, New York, The Buffalo News reports:
  • An absentee landlord and rental property manager are liable for $51,840 in damages and attorney fees linked to a housing discrimination case that occurred in December 2007, according to a Buffalo-based non-profit fair-housing agency.

    State Supreme Court Justice Patrick H. NeMoyer, who issued the judgment recently, in October 2013 upheld the City of Buffalo’s fair housing law, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of legal income, as well as the independent standing of fair-housing organizations bringing claims under the law.

    In December 2007, student Naima Stewart was denied the opportunity to rent one of several Huntington Avenue apartments, owned by California landlord Donald Peterson and listed with University Property Management, because she was low-income with a Section 8 housing voucher, according to Housing Opportunities Made Equal (HOME), which handled the case.

    A HOME investigator without the voucher was given tours of two apartments but one identifying herself as a Section 8 participant was denied, and told that the owner no longer accepted recipients of housing assistance as tenants, according to HOME..

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