Landlord and Tenant Acts
Throughout most of the fifty United States of America landlord and tenant acts are remarkably similar in terms of the protections they afford both landlords and tenants. Most often, these acts fall under the jurisdiction of something commonly referred to as the Fair Housing Act which governs how landlords may rent housing to prospective tenants. It stipulates very clearly that landlords are not permitted to discriminate for any reason when choosing to whom they wish to rent a unit. This includes not discriminating based on religion, sex, sexual preference, race, or disability.
Most Landlord and Tenant Acts provide very clear methods that a person can utilize to file a complaint against a prospective landlord and the way in which the complaint must be investigated and dealt with. Landlord and Tenant Acts can also be governed under municipal provisions and dealt with on a municipal level, where possible.
The Landlord and Tenant Acts of the United States of America restricts and prohibits any landlord from being discriminatory in their rental practices. This behavior is against the law and any landlord who willfully discriminates against any potential renter based on religion, race, sex, or disability can be prosecuted. If they are found guilty of having discriminated against a tenant attempting to rent a unit from them, they can be fined or, in rare cases, sent to prison.
Landlords are also not allowed to falsely denying that the rental unit is available because they wish to discriminate against someone who is attempting to rent it. Furthermore, all landlords are prohibited from setting different rental criteria based on their desire to discriminate against someone who is attempting to rent from them.
Tenants are protected under federal law from lenders who might choose to deny a loan based on any of these criteria as well. Anyone who suspects that they have been discriminated against based on religion, race, sex or disability, can file a complaint with the appropriate federal agency and their complaint will be investigated fully. If it is found that discrimination has occurred, the lender will be prosecuted by the federal government.
The Landlord Tenant Acts of the United States of America prohibits landlords from discriminating against people if they are disabled. This is the same whether it is a physical or mental disability. The prospective tenant is not required to disclose that they are disabled at the time of making an application to rent a housing unit. The landlord is not allowed to deny the prospective tenant the opportunity to rent the unit if they are later made aware of the tenant’s disability. Neither can a landlord deny a tenant the right to make alterations to their rental unit in order to accommodate their disability provided that they are willing to absorb the cost for doing so themselves.
Under the federal Landlord Tenant Acts a disability is defined as “any person who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.” These generally pertain to hearing, visual or mobility impairments.