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Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law: Reasonable Accomodations for Tenant Posing a "Direct Threat" to Others

  • Organization: Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law
  • Date Created: Tuesday, January 31, 2006
  • Submitted: Tuesday, January 31, 2006
  • Attachment(s): LINK
Fair Housing Information Sheet #8: The FHAA has an important caveat to its general requirement that landlords provide tenants with necessary and reasonable accommodations for their disabilities. The Act excludes from coverage individuals with disabilities "whose tenancy would constitute a direct threat to the health and safety of other individuals or whose tenancy would result in substantial physical damage to the property of others." 42 U.S.C. ยง 3604(f)(9). In light of this exclusion, landlords may refuse to grant tenants reasonable accommodations in certain situations. This information sheet explores what constitutes a "direct threat" for purposes of the Act, what kinds of behavior have triggered the exclusion in the past, and finally what circumstances will require a reasonable accommodation despite a tenant's admittedly threatening behavior.

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