Can a emotional support animal be turned down by a landlord?

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Can a emotional support animal be turned down by a landlord?

Asked on September 3, 2010 under Real Estate Law, Minnesota

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

This is such an interesting area of the law.  Even though states may themselves not have a law with regard to emotional support animals, federal law - including the Federal Fair Housing Amendments Act - does support the right of a person to have an emotional support animal if they meet certain criteria.  Those criteria include the establishment of a "qualifying disability" under the law, which means a mental disability, a mental illness, a learning disability (ADD or ADHD) and it must affect the persons ability to perform "major life activities" like caring for oneself, etc.  The landlord mus know about the disability and that without the pet the tenant can not enjoy the dwelling.  The tenant must request a "waiver" and the landlord must deny it to be actionable.  There must be a link between the animal and the disability.  A doctor's note usually can help explain it.  Good luck.


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