Landlord Accused of Illegally Terminating Resident’s Lease for ‘Medical’ Reasons

The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) recently announced that it has reached a $50,000 settlement in a housing disability discrimination case with a Modesto apartment complex owner and its property manager. The case involved a resident who claimed that her lease was illegally terminated based on her disability.

In her complaint, the resident claimed that the community terminated her lease because throughout her tenancy, she experienced multiple medical emergencies that required the assistance of an ambulance to transport her to the hospital. The property manager allegedly reported that other residents had complained about these emergencies.

“Housing providers cannot terminate or decline to renew a lease simply because they disfavor tenants with disabilities,” Kevin Kish, Director of the DFEH, said in a statement. “And to the extent a tenant with a disability needs a reasonable accommodation, landlords must provide it unless it would constitute an undue financial or administrative burden, a fundamental alteration of the program, a direct threat to the health and safety of others, or would cause substantial physical damage to the property of others.