Shaevel, Krems, O'Connor & Jackowitz, LLP
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Posts tagged disability
No-Pet Policy Doesn't Apply to Service Animals

You manage a building with a no-pet policy. A resident walks into your office and proclaims that she needs to have a companion animal, a big Siberian Husky, right now. Your inclination is to tell her no way, because you don't allow any pets, and certainly not a big dog. What should you do?

Recently, there have been many more requests from residents and applicants for service animals. In the past, these primarily involved seeing-eye dogs, but now there are numerous requests for emotional support or comfort animals, which are primarily dogs or cats, but can also be other animals such as birds, monkeys or iguanas.

Various studies have demonstrated that emotional support animals can assist in the treatment of physical and mental illness. They can help decrease depression, stress and anxiety. An increasing number of hospitals now allow pets on their floors to comfort patients.
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Hoarding: The New Epidemic

It's time for the annual apartment inspection, so you open the door and go in. Only then do you realize you have just entered the twilight zone. 

You look around and can't believe what you see. To the right, floor-to-ceiling stacks of papers, magazines and books. To the left, enormous piles upon piles of clothes and bags. You step further into the living room and can now see the door to one of the bedrooms, but realize the room is completely inaccessible because of the mountains of stuff. You peek into the bathroom -- the tub is full of clothes and papers. The kitchen stove is covered with open food, magazines and boxes. There is evidence of roaches and mice all around. The apartment is a disaster.

The resident is a hoarder.
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Drug Addicts: To Rent Or Not To Rent - That Is the Question

Article by Kenneth Krems for New England Affordable Housing Management Association publication

You have a few vacancies, so it is time to see who is at the top of your waiting list. The first applicant is a man with some history of drug addiction. You are uneasy about accepting him as a tenant. You want to protect your site from drug users, but you vaguely remember that drug addicts have some protection under the law. What should you do?

Under the American with Disabilities Act and other statutes, it is illegal to refuse to rent to an applicant based upon the handicapped status of the applicant. In general, substance abusers are protected from discrimination by the statues, so you cannot refuse to rent an apartment to someone simply because he has a history of using drugs.

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