I am looking for an apartment for me and my mother to live together. She is legal resident of the US. We found an apartment in Framingham, MA and the landlord refused to rent to us when I told him that my mother will live with me. Is this legal? Can I report it to housing for senior discrimination? What will happen to this landlord?
M.G.L. c. 151B Sec. 4 prohibits descrimination in housing on the basis of race, religion, national origin, age, ancestry, military background or service, sex, sexual prefererence, marital status, blindness, deafness, or the need of a guide dog, except owner occupies two family dwellings. If you feel that the landlord discriminated against you and your mother because you fall into one of these protected classes, you can bring a claim at the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (“MCAD”). If you can provide evidence that you are in a protected class, that you applied for the apartment, and that your application for the apartment was rejected under circumstances that give rise to unlawful discrimination, you might have a case. The landlord, however, can try to defend your claim by articulating a legitimate, non-discriminatory reason for his failure to rent the apartment to you. For example, the landlord could allege that he did not think you could afford the rent based upon your income or that he had another tenant who was more qualified. Good Luck.
The Framingham MA Landlord Tenant Attorneys at Goldman & Pease provide legal services to individuals and businesses and serve the Greater Boston region including Alston, Arlington, Belmont, Brighton, Brookline, Cambridge, Canton, Dedham, Dover, Milton, Natick, Needham, Newton, Norwood, Waltham, Watertown, Wayland, Wellesley, Weston, West Roxbury, Westwood, and all of Massachusetts.