On June 15, 2016, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) published new inflation-adjusted civil penalty amounts for individuals or entities that have been found to have violated a variety of different housing-related laws, including the federal Fair Housing Act. The new civil penalty amounts will apply to violations of the Fair Housing Act that occur on or after August 16, 2016.
Under these revised amounts, someone can be assessed a maximum civil penalty of $19,787 for his or her first violation of the Fair Housing Act. Respondents who had violated the Fair Housing Act in the previous 5 years could be fined a maximum of $49,467, and respondents who had violated the Act two or more times in the previous 7 years could be fined a maximum of $98,935.
These civil penalty amounts are in addition to actual damages and attorney’s fees and costs that may be awarded to someone who has experienced housing discrimination.
Prior to this adjustment, the penalty amounts were $16,000 for a first violation, $42,000 for a second violation, and $70,000 for a third violation.
Click here to view the Federal Register announcement of the new civil penalty limits.