Is it legal for our landlord to raise our rent an additional $150 a month for the birth of our first child?

UPDATED: Nov 17, 2011

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Is it legal for our landlord to raise our rent an additional $150 a month for the birth of our first child?

Our landlord has a clause in our lease that says our unit is for 2 adults and 0 children. And that any additional “occupants” will cause the rent to raise $150 per month per occupant. Isn’t this discriminatory against families since it discourages his tenants from having children?

Asked on November 17, 2011 under Real Estate Law, California


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

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Although I am not familiar with California's landlord tenant law, my gut is telling me that this provision in your lease does NOT  apply to babies born and that it is in fact discriminatory.  I would refuse to pay it and I would seek some legal help in this matter as soon as you can.  One would have to look at how "occupant" is defined under the landlord tenant law in California but I am betting 10 to 1 that your child does not fit the true description.  And here is what I found on the California Department of Consumer Affairs website:

Under California law, it is unlawful for a landlord, managing agent, real estate broker, or salesperson to discriminate against a person or harass a person because of the person's race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, childbirth or medical conditions related to them, as well as gender and perception of gender), sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, ancestry, familial status, source of income, or disability.

Good luck!

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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