Landlords can be sued for evicting tenants in retaliation for ending sexual relationships, according to a recent legal action in Fort Lauderdale. This is true even if the relationship was completely consensual. This particular case was eventually settled after going to an appellate court, and it sets an interesting precedent for the rental industry in Florida. Landlords should be aware that starting sexual relationships with their tenants can cause significant legal issues, even if those relationships are completely consensual.
If you have been sexually harassed by your landlord in Fort Lauderdale, you have every right to take legal action. Remember, sexual harassment can take many forms, and it might not be clear whether or not your experience constitutes sexual harassment. In order to go over your legal options, it’s best to get in touch with a qualified, experienced sexual harassment attorney in Florida. These legal professionals can determine whether or not your landlord has acted in an illegal manner.
Single Mother Sues After Being Evicted
A single mother has sued her landlord for sexual harassment after she was evicted. She allegedly paid a reduced rental rate in exchange for engaging in a sexual relationship with the property manager. Even though this relationship was consensual, it constitutes sexual harassment because the property manager was essentially in a position of authority over her, and he was able to coerce her as a result. In addition, the tenant claims that the property manager spied on her with surveillance cameras and instructed her not to invite male visitors to her house.
Eventually, this tenant ended the relationship, at which point she was promptly evicted from her apartment. As a result, she filed a lawsuit in Fort Lauderdale and accused her landlord of violating Florida’s Fair Housing Act. Interestingly, the case was initially dismissed by the district court, which claimed that no violation had occurred. However, this decision was then overturned in an appeals court. Crucially, the appeals court stressed that the sexual harassment never would have occurred if the tenant wasn’t female. Therefore, it constituted gender-based discrimination.
The Florida Housing Act is Essentially the Same as Title VII
Although there has been some confusion over what the Florida Housing Act can and can’t do, federal appeals courts have established that this set of laws is essentially identical to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. This has been established quite clearly in 2019. However, this recent case really drives the point home, stressing without a doubt that any gender-based harassment in the housing industry is against the law.
Enlist the Help of a Qualified Attorney Today
If you’ve been searching the Fort Lauderdale area for a qualified, experienced sexual harassment attorney, there are many legal professionals waiting to assist you. With their help, you can hold negligent landlords accountable for sexual harassment and gender-based discrimination. Filing a lawsuit can provide you with a considerable settlement that covers your damages. Book your consultation today and work with a lawyer to strive for justice.