Virginia Complex Settles Accessibility Case for $600K Plus Retrofits

The National Fair Housing Alliance (NFHA) recently announced a settlement in a lawsuit alleging disability discrimination in the design and construction of a Virginia community.

The lawsuit, filed by NFHA and Housing Opportunities Made Equal of Virginia, Inc. (HOME), alleged that owners, developers, and others violated federal fair housing law by failing to design and construct the community in compliance with accessibility requirements. The Fair Housing Act requires all new multifamily housing built after 1991 to be accessible and usable by people with disabilities.

The defendants agreed to retrofit the complex by making extensive modifications, including alterations to ensure accessible routes within the building for people who use wheelchairs; alterations to ensure accessible exterior routes throughout the complex, including to and around accessible parking spaces; and alterations to ensure public and common areas, as well as the important features in each dwelling unit, are usable and accessible.

In addition, the defendants also agreed to pay $600,000 in damages, costs, and attorneys’ fees. HOME and NFHA will establish a $100,000 accessibility fund to help retrofit other homes in the community.