DHCR Issues New Fact Sheet Regarding Discrimination Against Foreign-Born Tenants
The DHCR recently issued Fact Sheet #45 pertaining to the housing rights of foreign-born tenants. It reminds owners about the laws regarding discrimination, harassment, and retaliation pertaining to immigrant tenants.
According to the fact sheet, foreign-born individuals who are rent-regulated tenants must be treated the same as other rent-regulated tenants. Tenants who currently live in rent-stabilized or rent-controlled apartments are entitled to additional protections under New York law, such as rent limitations, eviction restrictions, and the right to receive essential services. These protections exist regardless of the rent-control tenant’s immigration status. For example, an owner who raises the rent in a manner inconsistent with the regulations will be in violation of the law. This tenant is entitled to legal relief regardless of his or her immigration status.
Another example is an owner who threatens immigrant tenants with eviction on baseless grounds or charges additional fees in an attempt to drive them out of their rent-regulated apartments. Doing so would be in violation of the law, and these tenants would be entitled to legal relief regardless of their immigration status. Finally, an owner who refuses to continue a tenant’s preferential rent because the tenant is foreign born or a member of a protected class will be in violation of the law. This tenant is entitled to legal relief regardless of his or her immigration status.
The fact sheet also states that it is illegal for an owner to require a rent-stabilized tenant to provide immigration status information or a Social Security number as a condition of renewing his or her lease.