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InfoSight Highlight: Fair Housing Act
Friday, November 3, 2017 7:00 AM

The Federal Fair Housing Act (FHA or Act) is Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968, as amended. The FHA makes it unlawful for any person to be subjected to discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status (having one or more children under the age of 18 living with a parent, individual who has legal custody or designee of a parent or legal custodian), or national origin in the sale, rental, or advertising of dwellings, in the provision of brokerage services, or in the availability of residential real estate-related transactions.

NCUA’s Rules and Regulations, 12 CFR Section 701.31 titled “Nondiscrimination Requirements,” implements the provisions of the FHA for federal credit unions, summarizing the prohibitions on discrimination in real estate lending and appraisals. The requirements for state chartered credit unions are located in the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD’s) Fair Housing Act regulations at 24 CFR Part 110.25 (a), which are similar to NCUA’s requirements.

Considerable overlap exists between the FHA and the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA), which prohibits discrimination with respect to any aspect of a credit transaction on the basis of sex, race, color, religion, national origin, marital status, age, receipt of public assistance, or the exercise, in good faith, of rights granted by the Consumer Credit Protection Act. The FHA works in conjunction with the ECOA to prohibit discrimination by anyone who is in the business of providing loans for housing. The ECOA and the FHA should be read together in order to fully understand the scope of a credit union’s fair lending obligations.

HUD has primary FHA regulatory and enforcement authority over credit unions. The Department of Justice brings suits on behalf of individuals based on referrals from HUD.

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Source:  InfoSight Compliance.

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