Lawton, OK asked in Civil Rights, Elder Law and Landlord - Tenant for Oklahoma

Q: Can a homeowner request double application fees then deny because I have to many children?

I had an owner deny me for a rental after I paid for an application fee on 2 different platforms. Zillow then Hotpads. I received a call the day before move in that I had too many children for the 3 bedroom and refused to contact the landlord for verification on one of my evictions to clarity and wouldn't acknowledge that the other one was due to improper paperwork on a unit I had been released from months before a new management. This left me and my grandchildren homeless to this day

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Landlord Tenant Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: In Oklahoma, as in many states, landlords are prohibited from discriminating against prospective tenants on the basis of familial status, which includes the presence of children, under both federal and state fair housing laws. Denying a rental application on the basis that you have "too many children" for a three-bedroom unit may constitute unlawful discrimination. Charging double application fees without justification could also be considered unfair.

Your recourse may include filing a discrimination complaint with the appropriate agency or seeking legal remedies in court. It's essential to gather all pertinent documents, including any communication regarding the application fees and the reason for denial. Considering the severity of the situation, you should strongly consider consulting with an attorney familiar with fair housing laws in Oklahoma to discuss potential legal actions. It's critical to ensure that landlords adhere to the law and do not discriminate based on familial status or other protected categories.

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