Recently, a central Ohio condominium board faced a Fair Housing discrimination claim for not obtaining FHA approval. A potential purchaser of a unit within the condominium brought the action, alleging that the board did not cooperate in seeking FHA approval for racially based, and discriminatory reasons. While ultimately, the Ohio Civil Rights Commission dismissed the case for lack of evidence, every condominium Board must be diligent in evaluating whether to become or assist in becoming FHA approved.
As the following article recommends, each Ohio condominium board must carefully weigh the pros and cons of being FHA approved: http://www.inman.com/2014/01/28/condo-boards-could-face-discrimination-claims-if-they-dont-at-least-consider-fha-certification/.
If the board decides to not proceed with approval, the board should document specific reasons for not doing so. By proactively evaluating the association’s position and taking a position before a possible sale or refinancing that involves FHA, the board may help to minimize the possibility of a similar discrimination action against the association.
If your board is considering whether to obtain FHA approval for your association, and your association is a Kaman & Cusimano service option client, please contact one of our attorneys who can help you further evaluate the association’s position.