Chicago Housing Discrimination Attorney
Most cases of discrimination have to do with employment; however, race and ethnic discrimination in the sale or rental of an apartment or home is also illegal, protecting those individuals under both the Illinois Human Rights Act and Federal Law – 42 U.S.C. 1982.
Unfortunately, housing discrimination can happen in a variety of ways. A landlord or developer who refuses to rent or sell to an individual due to their race or ethnicity, or who charges them greater rent than other individuals, may be guilty of housing discrimination. Another example may be where a housing association fines an owner for a violation of the rules, but not an owner of a different race or ethnicity.
Like employment discrimination cases, housing discrimination cases can be proven using either the direct or indirect method. (See our Discrimination page for an explanation.) The direct method requires an admission, such as a housing association that has a charter which prohibits selling to minorities, however, these cases are rare.
The indirect method of proof is far more common in housing discrimination cases. However, in housing discrimination, once the plaintiff has proven that he has been treated differently, the landlord or developer can provide an alternative reason for the different treatment. Proving that this alternative reason is false is much more difficult. This is because different houses, as well as different units in an apartment building, can be very different. For example, one apartment is likely to have a better view than another, so if two apartments have different views, the landlord’s opinion as to which is better is going to be accepted.
How then does a person prove that an alternative reason is false? One effective way is to take a look at the rent that was paid by prior tenants. In the case of the assessment of fines or penalties, it can be compared to other homeowners or tenants that may be suffering from the same discriminatory conduct.
Since the methods of proving housing discrimination claims are similar to those in employment discrimination claims, an employment attorney is the right person to handle your case. The Chicago housing and rental discrimination attorneys at Maduff & Maduff are here to help you with your housing discrimination case.
As your Chicago housing discrimination attorneys, we represent clients in a variety of areas including Non Compete Agreements Attorney, Religious & Disability Discrimination Attorney and School Law Attorney.