Housing Consumers

Individuals who reside in western or central Washington and have an allegation of discrimination relating to a housing transaction may contact the Fair Housing Center of Washington.

About Your Rights

Federal and state law define the following protected classes regarding discrimination.

Federal Protected Classes

Race, color, national origin, sex, religion, familial status (presence of children under 18) and disability.

State Protected Classes

All federal classes plus: creed, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity and military/veteran status.

City and County Protected Classes

All federal and state protected classes plus: Section 8 voucher holders (Seattle, Bellevue, Redmond, Kirkland, Vancouver, and unincorporated King County), age (Seattle, Tacoma and unincorporated King County), ancestry (Tacoma and unincorporated King County) and political ideology (Seattle).

What About Retaliation?

Individuals filing civil rights complaints or making discrimination complaints are protected from retaliation by state and federal laws.

Reasonable Accommodations for People With Disabilities

In accordance with federal and state laws, housing providers must make reasonable accommodations to give people with disabilities equitable opportunity to use housing. Housing providers must also allow tenants to make reasonable modifications to these dwellings, and they are prohibited from discriminating against people with disabilities or their associates.

Service Animal Policy

Tenants and housing providers both have specific rights and responsibilities regarding service animals. Housing providers must grant reasonable accommodations for tenants with service animals. Fair housing law differs from the ADA definition of service animal to include emotional support and therapy animals regardless of breed, height, or weight. A housing provider may request that the tenant provide verification for the need of a service animal, such as a doctor’s note.

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