Virginia Retirement Community Pays $390K to Settle Discrimination Claims

In a recent settlement, a continuing care retirement community in Virginia agreed to pay $390,000 to resolve allegations that it violated the fair housing law by instituting policies that discriminated against residents with disabilities.

The complaint alleged that beginning in May 2011, the community instituted a series of policies that prohibited, and then limited, residents in its assisted living, nursing, and memory-support units from eating in dining rooms or attending community events with independent living residents. The complaint also alleges that when residents and family members complained about these policies, the community retaliated against them. In addition, the complaint alleged that the community had polices that discriminated against residents who used motorized wheelchairs by requiring them to get the community’s permission, pay a non-refundable fee, and obtain liability insurance.

Under the agreement, the community agreed to pay $350,000 into a settlement fund to compensate residents and family members allegedly affected by the policies, and to pay a $40,000 civil penalty. The community also agreed to appoint a fair housing compliance officer and to implement new policies on dining and events, reasonable accommodations, and motorized wheelchairs.

Source: Justice Department