By Jack Karp for Law360 | July 21, 2023
Landlords around the country routinely refuse to rent to tenants who rely on housing vouchers and other forms of financial assistance, so a growing number of low-income tenants and their advocates are using recently passed source-of-income laws to fight the practice.
Megan Morse had hoped to use her rental assistance voucher to move to a neighborhood closer to her hospital and her daughter.
“I can’t drive. I’m physically disabled as well as epileptic, so travel is a bit much,” said Morse, who has a rare disease called arthrogryposis multiplex congenita and regularly participates in an epilepsy study at the University of Michigan Hospital.
But when she applied to rent apartments in those Ann Arbor, Michigan, neighborhoods, she was repeatedly turned down, with representatives of two apartment complexes telling her they didn’t accept tenants who use housing vouchers.
“Being denied by them was a little of a gut punch,” said Morse, who wound up living in a less accessible area just outside Ann Arbor, farther from her daughter and the hospital.
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