According to the American Kennel Club, emotional support animals (also commonly referred to as ESAs for short) are actually formally prescribed by mental health professionals, similar to the way one might prescribe medication to treat an underlying condition. Brief Summary of Emotional Support Animals and Housing Laws Kate Brewer (2005) Persons with disabilities have an equal right to housing as those without disabilities. Therefore, virtually all domesticated cat and dog breeds qualify. Also commonly referred to as the FHA, the Fair Housing Act was first adopted into law all the way back in 1968. Under Federal Fair Housing Laws, Emotional Support Animals must have access to apartments with a no-pet policy and are exempt from pet-related fees. Emotional support dogs, on the other hand, do NOT require any type of specific training. Here’s everything you need to know about ESAs and when you have the right to deny them. In order to qualify for an emotional support animal, you need to provide your landlord with an ESA letter from a licensed healthcare professional. A lot of people assume that emotional support animals and service animals are the same things, but they’re actually two totally different concepts. But what if your landlord says that’s not allowed, period? The animal is often a small dog, but it could be most any species that provides a person emotional support like affection or judgment-free, positive regard. Emotional Support Animals help aid with an emotional or mental disability. Under Federal Fair Housing Laws, Emotional Support Animals must have access to apartments with a no-pet policy and are exempt from pet-related fees. If your ESA damages property, makes excessive noise or shows aggression towards other people, you are more likely to encounter problems and potentially be denied housing. Dog breeds like Rottweilers and pit bulls are sometimes restricted in pet policies. Landlords may create a “no pet” policy in their apartment or other community for a wide array of different reasons, all of which are perfectly understandable. It’s also worth pointing out that because of the FHA, a landlord can’t charge any type of a pet deposit for an ESA or add any additional amount of money on top of the agreed-upon monthly rent. Dog breeds like Rottweilers and pit bulls are sometimes restricted in pet policies. Breed and age restrictions do not apply to ESAs. Landlords’ Rights and Responsibilities. Still, from a legal point of view, the Fair Housing Act might enable a landlord … However, there IS actually a way for a landlord to refuse to accept an emotional support animal from one of their tenants – however, it’s certainly a lot easier said than done. A housing provider can legitimately refuse your ESA request in any of the following scenarios: The property owner can prove that allowing the ESA would subject them to undue financial or administrative stress. Yes. If so, does the individual have a disability-related need for the emotional support animal? However, as a landlord, you may encounter tenants that require an emotional support animal (ESA) to help with mental health conditions such as severe depression, anxiety or PTSD. In certain cases, a landlord can legally refuse an ESA: No. After completing a short quiz and doctor-provided questionnaire, your information will be securely sent to one of our licensed medical professionals. If a lease states a tenant cannot have pets or can only have pets of a certain size and type, then these conditions must be followed or the tenant is not abiding by the contract.The landlord could choose to terminate the lease, and give a 14 day notice to the tenant to end the tenancy. A single-family home with a room being rented out when the owner did not use a real estate agent to buy or rent the property. This is a tricky situation; however, there are times when the law is in the landlord’s favor. Even though you do have certain rights, a landlord can lawfully evict you if your ESA becomes a danger to other tenants. From everyday tasks to challenging obstacles, an emotional support animal can be vital in successfully navigating day to day life. Landlords must make reasonable accommodations for ESAs under the FHA, regardless of “no pets” policies or property restrictions. The reason why landlords have to accept emotional support animals is because an ESA is not considered a “pet” in the strictest sense of the term. The overriding piece is housing discrimination, and an emotional support animal is just one cause of action that would come up in a housing discrimination case, so you would say, “All right, the landlord didn’t allow me to have this emotional support animal. The caveat here is that the landlord will need to be able to prove that the animal in question is a threat. If I have my dog in the apartment, can the landlord … This is a tricky situation; however, there are times when the law is in the landlordâ s favor. Under the laws of the FHA, landlords cannot legally deny emotional support animals unless they are completely unreasonable.

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