The Justice Department announced today that the manager and owner of the Linden House Apartments in Cleveland have agreed to pay $100,000 to resolve allegations that they refused to rent to individuals because the individuals had children. The settlement must still be approved by U.S. District Judge Solomon Oliver Jr.
The settlement resolves a lawsuit filed by the Justice Department on September 30, 2013, against the Zaremba Management Company, the Linden Apartment Company and a property manager who worked at the Linden House Apartments. The United States alleged that the defendants violated the Fair Housing Act by maintaining a policy of refusing to rent units at Linden House to families with children. It also alleged that the Linden House Apartments had a policy of evicting tenants or asking tenants to relocate if they had children while living at Linden House. While the Fair Housing Act does allow housing that is reserved for older persons to limit residency to adults under certain circumstances, Linden House did not meet the requirements for this exemption.
The settlement requires the defendants to pay $90,000 to victims of their discriminatory actions, and to pay $10,000 in civil penalties to the United States. The settlement also requires the defendants to remove any restrictions on occupancy by families with children at the Linden House Apartments and to take certain steps such as training employees and reporting to the Department of Justice to make sure that such discriminatory policies are not implemented in the future.
For more information, go to www.doj.gov.