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Fair Housing

CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 16, 2008 | Tony Barboza, Times Staff Writer
The owners and managers of a Stanton apartment complex that fined families $50 and threatened them with eviction notices when their children played outside agreed Friday to pay $618,000 to settle a housing discrimination lawsuit. In the class-action suit, nine families alleged that Plaza Patria Court Ltd., the owner of the Plaza Court Apartments, targeted families by fining them if their children were outside unsupervised, playing on the grass or taking out the trash.
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BUSINESS
June 4, 2008 | Peter Y. Hong, Times Staff Writer
Three years ago, Donna Robbins tried to use her soaring equity to remodel her house in this Napa Valley community. Instead, she says she got cleaned out. Robbins claims that friends from church who ran a finance company agreed to arrange a home equity loan to pay for a new kitchen, bathrooms and landscaping. As with most financial transactions, there were papers to sign. But Robbins says that what she was told were loan documents were in fact papers that transferred the title to her property.
REAL ESTATE
April 13, 2008 | Project Sentinel
Question: During the last six months I fell behind in my rent because of a serious illness. I have lived here for more than 10 years and have always had a good relationship with my property owner, who reluctantly filed a court eviction. Fortunately we were able to resolve the matter during the court process and I was able to stay. I paid the past-due rent and the court action was dismissed "with prejudice." What does this phrase mean? Answer: This worked out for you on several levels.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 4, 2008 | Maura Dolan, Times Staff Writer
The law may temper the freewheeling nature of the Internet after all. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals decided Thursday that a website may be found liable for violating fair housing laws by matching roommates according to gender, sexual orientation and parenthood. Federal law protecting websites "was not meant to create a lawless, no-man's land on the Internet," the court in San Francisco said in an 8-3 ruling. The judges said a site called Roommates.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 4, 2008 | David Haldane
City Councilman Carlos Bustamante has been appointed to the state Fair Employment and Housing Commission, the governor's office said Thursday. "Carlos' background in both public and private sectors dealing with housing issues makes him uniquely qualified for this position," said Rachel Cameron, a spokeswoman for Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.
REAL ESTATE
August 26, 2007 | From Project Sentinel
Question: I have lived in my apartment complex for eight years on a month-to-month agreement. I have a large dog that is well behaved. Recently my landlord told me I couldn't keep my dog because it might bite someone. He gave me a 30-day notice to remove it. I paid a $200 pet deposit at move in. Is there a law that protects tenants with pets? Answer: It depends. Under certain circumstances, State of California Civil Code Section 798.
NATIONAL
April 25, 2007 | Ann M. Simmons, Times Staff Writer
African Americans seeking rental housing in the New Orleans metropolitan area face significant discrimination and fewer accommodations to choose from since Hurricane Katrina, a report released Tuesday found. In 6 out of 10 transactions, African Americans faced less favorable treatment than comparably qualified whites, the report said. "For Rent, Unless You're Black," a study by the Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center, surveyed 40 properties in the parishes of Orleans, Jefferson, St.
BUSINESS
October 30, 2006 | Annette Haddad, Times Staff Writer
Since the home-valuation website Zillow.com had its well-publicized launch eight months ago, it has taken a lot of flak from its users for being frequently wrong. Now, the Seattle-based site, which allows you to look up the estimated value of your house for free, is accused of purposely being misleading. In a 12-page complaint filed with the Federal Trade Commission last week, a leading fair housing advocacy group says Zillow.
REAL ESTATE
October 8, 2006 | From Project Sentinel
Question: Someone from a fair housing agency came to my door recently, asking questions about my experiences in the apartment complex. She said she was investigating a complaint of housing discrimination but would not give any details. Later, the property manager seemed upset that I had spoken to the woman. The next day, I received a 30-day notice to vacate, with no reason given. Am I protected under fair housing laws?
REAL ESTATE
May 14, 2006 | By Project Sentinel
Question: We have a tenant who has been renting a unit for more than 10 years. When she moved in, she paid "last month's rent" to our resident manager. She has given notice that she is moving. Her rent is now $400 higher than what it was when she moved in. Can we require her to pay the $400 difference? Answer: Years ago, the practice was common, but it's not recommended now.
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