Landlord Pays Thousands for Someone Else’s Crime
Homeowner Vicki New was caught making racist threats and attacks against neighbors on camera in Indianapolis – which is why many were shocked when one of the victim’s property management companies had to pay more than $200,000 for her crimes.
The Twin Creeks Homeowners Association and Kirkpatrick Management agreed to pay $262,500 in a settlement with the Fair Housing Center of Central Indiana (FHCCI), which represented the victims.
“Our client and others residing in the Twin Creeks subdivision endured relentless harassment based on race or national origin for far too long. This ruling sends a message to all that harassment and housing discrimination of any kind is unacceptable and the law will be enforced,” stated Amy Nelson, executive director of the FHCCI, in an interview with a local news station.
Although the property management company didn’t make any racist threats, they had a duty to know what was transpiring and protect their tenants from Vicki – thus, FHCCI pursued a settlement. Vicarious liability is the act of being held responsible for someone else’s actions, and it often comes into play when the Fair Housing Act (FHA) is violated.
While you may believe it’s easy to follow the FHA, there are critical nuances most landlords don’t know – like the concept of vicarious liability – until it’s too late. Serious property owners looking to keep their business successful long term should educate themselves on their federal, state, and local laws to stay compliant.
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