The Justice Department announced this week that a Florida property management firm and HOA will pay $150,000 to settle a discrimination claim.
The pending lawsuit alleged that the HOA’s occupancy limits violated the Fair Housing Act.
The lawsuit arose from a complaint filed with HUD by a family with six children that was living at the property. After the family moved into their 4-bedroom townhome, the HOA and property manager indicated there was a problem with the number of people living in the home and threatened to evict the family. The family eventually moved.
Under the settlement, the victims will receive $45,000, while $85,000 will go into a victim fund to compensate other aggrieved families, and $20,000 will be paid to the United States as a civil penalty.
In addition, both the property manager and HOA will receive training on the requirements of the FHA.
Twenty-plus years of HUD guidance and cases have put housing providers on notice that occupancy standards which unfairly limit or exclude families with children violate the Fair Housing Act, said Bryan Greene, HUDs Acting Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity. HUD and the Department of Justice are committed to making sure that all people have equal access to the housing for which they financially qualify.
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