For many families , the purchase of a home is the largest single investment they will make during their lifetime. The federal governments have enacted laws to ensure that the public interest in real estate is adequately protected.
CIVIL RIGHTS ACT OF 1866
The Civil Rights Act of 1866 prohibits any type of discrimination based on race in any real estate transaction (sale or rental) without exception. This law is still in force today.
A suit can be filed in a federal court under the 1866 Civil Rights Act . The court may award actual (monetary) damages and punitive damages for racial discrimination.
The Civil Rights Act of 1866 states that :
All citizens of the United States shall have the same right , in every State and territory , as is enjoyed by white citizens thereof to inherit , purchase, lease , sell , hold, and convey real and personal property .
Jones V. Mayer. Joseph Lee Jones filed a complaint in 1965 in district court alleging that Alfred H. Mayer Company had refused to sell him a home because he was black. The famous legal case Jones V. Alfred H. Mayer Company reached the U.S. supreme court in 1968. The court upheld the Civil Rights Act of 1866 , which prohibits all racial discrimination without exception. The Supreme Court declared that the 1866 Alt still applies today and that it prohibits all racial discrimination (public and private) in the sale of all real property (residential and commercial). Remember , when race is involved , no exemptions apply. This court decision allows a person who has experienced discrimination on certain exemptions in the Civil rights Act of 1968 when the discrimination is based on race.
Civil Rights act of 1964 (Titles II and III )
The civil rights act of 1964 was landmark legislation that ended racial segregation in schools , the workplace, and publick accommodations. Title ii of the 1964 act prohibits discrimination on the basis of race , color , religion , and national origin in the places of public accommodation engaged in interstate commerce, including Hotels , Motels , Restaurants , gas stations , and places of entertainment. Title iii prohibits state and municipal governments from denying access to public facilities on the grounds of race, color , religion, national origin.
Civil rights Act of 1968: The fair housing Act
The fair Housing Act (Act)is contained in Title VIII of the Civil rights Act of the 1968 .
The Act prohibits discrimination on the basis of race , color , religion , sex , and national origin when selling or renting residential property . The law covers residential dwellings and apartments , as well as vacant land acquired for the purpose of constructing residential dwellings.
Fair Housing Amendments Act. In 1988, Congress amended the fair Housing Act of 1968 to include two additional protected classes: Familial status and handicap status. The Fair Housing Act , as amended , prohibits discrimination in sales , leasing , the advertising of sales and rentals, financing , and brokerage services. Today , the Fair Housing Act includes seven protected classes : Race , color , religion , sec , handicap status , familial status , and national origin.
Fair Housing Poster . The 1988 amendment also created the equal housing opportunity poster. The poster features the equal logo and a statement pledging adherence to the Fair Housing Act. The poster is available without charge from the Department of Housing and Urban Development(HUD) . The poster must be displayed at real estate offices and other businesses involved in the housing industry. In the event a discrimination complaint is made against a broker , HUD considers failure to prominently display the equal housing opportunity poster in the broker’s place of business as evidence of discrimination .