Does the Americans with Disabilities Act apply to landlords who accept Section 8 Vouchers?
April 30, 2009 6:06 PM   Subscribe

Does the Americans with Disabilities Act apply to landlords who accept Section 8 Vouchers?
posted by anthropomorphic to Law & Government (8 answers total)
Are you talking about the accessibility of an apartment building or discrimination based on a disability?
posted by njbradburn at 6:13 PM on April 30, 2009

Typically ADA applies to employment situations, not living arrangements.
posted by LOLAttorney2009 at 6:30 PM on April 30, 2009

You want the Fair Housing Act, not the ADA. Seems to me like it would apply, but IANAL.
posted by donajo at 6:41 PM on April 30, 2009

LOLAttorney2009, part of the ADA relates to employment; Title III has to do with Public Accommodations, which may or may not include Section 8 housing; there is also a Fair Housing Act which sometimes is considered under the umbrella of "ADA". Check out for more.
posted by dpx.mfx at 6:43 PM on April 30, 2009

This might help.

If you are Googling, try searching for "Section 504" "Rehabilitation Act of 1973".

Not a lawyer, but I think (especially) if someone receives federal funds, they have to allow everyone in the door.
posted by Houstonian at 7:13 PM on April 30, 2009

I am not your lawyer, but please also note that the ADA was amended last fall to liberalize the definition of "disability."
posted by DavidNYC at 8:23 PM on April 30, 2009

I would imagine not, if only from seeing the situiation in my own city... most apartments are in converted homes, with a couple units on the first floor and a couple more on the second. If landlords who accepted section 8 were required to add elevators to these homes (besides the fact that 80% or more are pre-1900 and that would be a nightmare in and of itself), I suspect no private landlord here would bother with section 8 at all. As it is, that is not the case and private landlords are just as likely to accept section 8 as the large apartment buildings.
It could also be a grandfather-clause thing... required unless the building was built before a specific year, in which case they do not have to make the changes.
posted by Kellydamnit at 9:06 PM on April 30, 2009 is your one stop shop for all sorts of info on HUD programs including the Section 8 voucher program.

I could give a better answer with more information. Are you asking about making modifications to buildings for better accessibility? In that case the answer is maybe yes. Tenants can ask for a reasonable accomodation (for example installing shower grab bars,or letting the tenant have an assistance animal) but the key word is reasonable. (for some apartment owners widening a doorway may be reasonable and for others it might not be.)
posted by vespabelle at 9:44 PM on April 30, 2009

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