It’s easy to assume that a disabled tenants cannot be evicted from their home no matter what. But this is not true.
Sure, there are legal protections in place but they’re not as straightforward as people think they are. In fact, someone with a disability can still be evicted if they violate their agreement with the landlord.
If you are a landlord in a situation like this, here’s what you need to know about housing laws and disability discrimination so you present your case without any issue.
Interested? Let’s start!
1. Understanding Legal Protections
First, you need to understand the law and know what is expected of everyone involved.
The Fair Housing Act (FHA) is a set of laws that protects disabled tenants in the United States. A common misconception about this act is that it makes it impossible to evict a tenant with disabilities. While it does make it more difficult, landlords can still do so if the tenant violates their agreements.
The FHA’s main goal is to protect disabled individuals from housing discrimination. Landlords cannot deny you a home or evict you simply because you have a disability. They also cannot charge you higher rent or security deposits because of your condition.
If you are a disabled person, renting a place then you have the legal right for reasonable living accommodations. As long as you have spoken with your landlord about your needs like ramps or any issue in the building that you can’t solve, beforehand and providing help is their duty.
But only as long as it counts as a reasonable thing and you are fulfilling your side of duties.
Landlords are not without protections when it comes to the fair housing act. The law acknowledges that requests should be reasonable and not unduly burden landlords.
For example; If a requested modification would incur excessive costs or fundamentally alter the nature of the landlord’s business, they may have grounds to decline the request.
All in all, Understanding these legal boundaries is crucial for landlords to navigate the fine line between providing accommodations and ensuring the financial viability of their rental business.
2. Valid Reasons for Eviction
The FHA provides robust protection against eviction solely based on disability. However, it does not protect tenants from eviction for universally-valid reasons that apply to all tenants regardless of disability status.
In other words, The FHA doesn’t protect you from being booted if you break the rules in a way that has nothing to do with your disability.
1, Wrecking your cube beyond normal “wear and tear,” like scuffs on walls or stains on carpets. If you do that, they don’t have to give you a second chance, even if you’re disabled.
2, Nonpayment of rent is a legitimate and primary reason for eviction. Landlords rely on money to fix stuff and pay bills, and they can’t do that if you don’t pay rent
3, And just like every tenant ever, disabled ones can be evicted for causing disturbances or engaging in illegal activity.
All in all, It is essential for disabled tenants to be mindful of their responsibilities in maintaining the property to avoid facing eviction on these grounds.
3. What To Do If You Have To? What Ensure Success
First and foremost, When landlords need to evict a disabled tenant, they need to tread lightly (but legally).
The first thing they have to do is give proper notice. There are local and federal laws that tell landlords how much time they have to give someone before evicting them out.
They also have to give tenants a written notice that explains why they’re being booted from the home and when exactly that will happen. They might also offer some time for the tenant to fix whatever problem caused them to get an eviction notice in the first place.
Before resorting to an eviction notice, landlords could also talk with the tenant about other options. Maybe there are ways the landlord could change things around or find another home within their portfolio of rentals.
A landlord must document all these options as proof that they are not doing the eviction out of malice. So, Writing down what happened while dealing with any requests, and what other options they considered.
The reason behind this is simple; If anything ever goes wrong and a court has to pick sides, that paper trail could be the difference between someone being homeless or not.
And that’s really it. The most important thing for both tenants and landlords is remembering to be nice and open when talking about all this. That’s how a healthy living situation will happen.
Closing Thoughts: Disabled Tenants Cannot Be Evicted?
Finding the right balance between fulfilling tenant needs and adhering to what is expected of landlords is so important.
So, knowing how to properly do this will help both parties establish an environment that adheres to all regulations and gives them what they need.
Both landlords and tenants have to approach this process with an open mind, empathy for one another, and be ready to find solutions that give everyone what they need while still staying within the bounds of the law.
Do you have something to add? Let us know in the comment section below.