Racine today announced a lawsuit against Evolve, LLC and Evolve Property Management, LLC, local real estate companies, for violating consumer protection law through illegal housing discrimination. The Office of the Attorney General OAG alleges in its complaint that consumers were harmed when the companies refused to show or rent available properties to prospective tenants who receive housing assistance from the federal government.
In its lawsuit, OAG is seeking an injunction against the companies to stop their illegal and discriminatory business practices, as well as restitution and penalties for violating District law. The companies are headquartered in the H Street Corridor and offer multiple apartments for rent in the District, including several units o n Capitol Hill.
Evolve advertises apartments online at www. The voucher program allows low-income families to rent housing on the private market at market rates and is intended to give these families more choices than traditional public housing. Landlords cannot refuse to rent to prospective tenants simply because they rely on vouchers.
However, despite this protection, a recent study showed that 15 percent of District-area landlords still refused to accept vouchers. Under the CPPA, it is considered an unlawful trade practice to violate other laws. The District alleges that by illegally refusing to show or rent property to prospective tenants who intended to use housing vouchers, Evolve violated the CPPA.
November 29, In its advertisements, the company explicitly stated it did not accept housing vouchers. Additionally, company representatives verbally communicated that Evolve did not accept housing vouchers at its rental properties. Prevented voucher recipients from viewing and leasing rental properties: Evolve used an online form to allow prospective tenants to schedule showings of available apartments.
Any prospective tenant who indicated they planned to use Section 8 vouchers to pay their rent were automatically denied the opportunity to view the properties.
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