California Community Settles Dispute Over Emotional Support Cat

Last month, the owners and managers of a 172-unit California community settled allegations that they discriminated against a family on the basis of disability when they denied the family’s request for a reasonable accommodation for an emotional support cat.

The settlement resolves a complaint filed with HUD, which referred the matter to the Justice Department. In their complaint, the family claimed that the landlords refused to make an exception to the community’s no-pet policy so their disabled son could keep the cat as an emotional support animal. The family also accused the landlords of making intimidating statements and interfering with their right to request a reasonable accommodation. The settlement agreement requires community to pay $32,500 to the family and includes the implementation of a reasonable accommodation policy, training, and reporting requirements.