Chapter 11:  Managing State and Federal Laws

Antitrust Law

l   Competition

l   Price Fixing

Fair Housing Laws

l   Civil Rights Act of 1866--Prohibits discrimination based upon race.

l   Fair Housing Act of the Civil Rights Acts of 1968 and 1988 prohibits discrimination of protected classes

Protected Classes Include:

l   Race

l   Color

l   Sex

l   Handicap--Handicap includes recovering drug addicts, alcoholics, and AIDS victims.

l   Religion

l   National origin

l   I expect that sexual preference will soon be added.

Exemptions:

l   Sex discrimination may be allowed in the case of single-sex dormitories or rooming houses.

l   Religious discrimination may be allowed in properties owned by the religious institution.

l   Private clubs can restrict rentals to members provided membership is not discriminatory.

l   Age discrimination against children allowed in multifamily units restricted for occupancy by the elderly (55+) provided that significant facilities and services are provided specifically for the elderly and that 80% of the occupants must be 55+.

Requirements and Prohibited Practice

l    Blockbusting

l    Steering

l    Discriminatory advertising

l    Equal Housing Poster  (See Figure 11.2)

l    Using Credit Reports

l    Testers

l    Filing a Complaint

l    Conciliation Relief

l    Civil Penalties

l    Actual Damages and Punitive Damages

l    Statute of Limitations

Avoiding Fair Housing Violations

l   Display Equal Housing Poster

l   Have a detailed written office policy

l   Train staff and discuss frequently

l   Have a compliance specialist

l   Make sure tenant selection does not violate

l   Keep Detailed Records (See Form 11.1)

Evaluating Lease Applications

l   Require credit check, verification of employment, reference from previous landlords

l   Reasons for denial

   Unverifiable credit references

   Insufficient income (use ratio)

   Temporary or irregular employment

   Insufficient length of employment

   Excessive debt

   Too many unpaid bills

   Poor payment history

Pennsylvania's Human Relations Act

l   Includes an additional protected category of age (40+)

l   Protection of guide animals

American’s with Disabilities Act

l   Protected classes

l   Zoning issues

l   Prohibited activities

Who is disabled?

l    One who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.

l    Includes:

    AIDS and HIV positive only

    Emotionally disturbed

    Recovering addicts

    Also protected are those associating with a person with a disability

Land Use and Zoning Issues

l   Laws regulating group homes

l   Building codes that negatively impact accessibility improvements

l   Parking

Prohibited Activities

l    Refusal to sell, lease, or finance property of a disabled person

l    Adding terms or conditions to leases or any contracts with disabled persons

l    Refusing to permit reasonable improvements (at expense of handicapped person)

l    Refusing to make reasonable accommodations

l    Advertising with any indicated preference related to handicap

l    Requiring information relating to handicap

l    Constructing, operating, leasing, or selling any property that is not acceptable

Sales and Leasing

l    Qualifying: may not inquire about handicap

l    Lists of accessible properties

l    Tenant and landlord responsibilities

l    Tenant restoration requirement

Property Management Issues

l    Audit

l    Plan for compliance

Other Business Issues

l    Construction and Development

l    Appraising

l    Financing

l    Real estate offices

l    Conventions, meetings

Employment Issues

l    Exclusion for less than 4 employees

l    Job descriptions

l    Selection and hiring

l    Termination

l    Reasonable accommodation

Business Service Accommodation

l    Hearing

    TTD

    Interpreting

l    Vision

    Braille

    Electronic voice

    Color blindness

l    Physical impairments

Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)

l    Historical Background

l    Purpose of Consumer Credit Reporting Agencies

l    Credit Report Information

l    Credit Report Errors

l    Information on File

l    Persons Seeing the Credit Report

l    Rejection Based on Credit Report

    Name, address, and phone of credit reporting agencies

    Notice the credit reporting agencies report only credit information and not credit evaluation

    Explain right to free copy of report and dispute information

Megan’s Law

l   Reporting Requirements

l   State Laws and the Property Manager

   Act 34—Criminal records

   Act 35—Sex offender

Sexual Harassment

l   Manager-Staff

l   Manager/Staff-Tenant

l   Tenant-tenant

Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction Act (LBPHRA)

l   Effects of Lead on Humans

l   Sources for Lead Exposure

l   Target Housing

l   Required Disclosures

   Disclosure of Presence of Any Known Lead-Based Paint or Hazards (See form 11-4)

   Provide Copies of Any Reports

   Provide Pamphlet “Protecting Your Family from Lead”

l   Penalties for Non Disclosure

l   Management Responsibilities

Landlord-Tenant
Rights and duties of landlord

l   Right to receive rent:  may be paid to court upon dispute

l   Obligation to repair

   Generally none unless specified by contract

   PLTA, however, requires repair of building

Tenants' obligations, duties, liabilities

l   Abnormal wear and tear

l   Minor repairs

l   Pay rent as prescribed

l   Keep safe and sanitary

l   Normal plumbing maintenance

Other landlord tenant provisions

l   Deposits

   Notice with 30 days

   75% of interest

l   Disputes

l   Vacating--30 days from vacating to return unused money