If a landlord discriminates against you because of your sexual orientation by not renting to you or trying to evict you, the actions you can take in response will depend on the following three factors:
There are no federal laws that prohibit sexual orientation discrimination in housing at the rental stage. But many states and several cities have passed laws that make sexual orientation discrimination in renting properties illegal. Here are lists of the states and cities that do afford protections:
Having a lease can make all the difference. Once your tenancy has begun, your landlord can only terminate you lease if you break a clause of you lease or if you break the law. Most leases don’t contain clauses that have anything to do with your sexual orientation or who you share your bed with. Also, most states have abolished their fornication and sodomy laws. So, if your lease does not contain any clauses that bear on your sexual orientation and there are no laws that prohibit your behavior, your landlord will have a very hard time trying to terminate your lease.
If you have a month-to-month lease, you do not have the same protections of those who have a lease. This is because with month-to-month rental agreements, the landlord is allowed to terminate the agreement so long as he provides the required amount of notice, which is usually 30 days. Unless you live in a city or state that makes sexual orientation discrimination illegal, you don’t have many options.
Discrimination laws are constantly changing and evolving. If you feel you have been the victim of sexual orientation discrimination in the housing context, either by your landlord refusing to rent to you or attempting to terminate your lease, you should contact an experienced real property lawyer. A real property lawyer can help you understand the latest developments in discrimination law and can assist you in filing a claim.
Last Modified: 01-08-2013 08:19 AM PSTLaw Library Disclaimer
We've helped more than 4 million clients find the right lawyer – for free. Present your case online in minutes. LegalMatch matches you to pre-screened lawyers in your city or county based on the specifics of your case. Within 24 hours experienced local lawyers review it and evaluate if you have a solid case. If so, attorneys respond with an offer to represent you that includes a full attorney profile with details on their fee structure, background, and ratings by other LegalMatch users so you can decide if they're the right lawyer for you.