Fair Housing Act Lawsuit By Cancer Patient Denied Opportunity to Purchase West Village Apartment

In a lawsuit filed on March 25, 2016 in Manhattan federal court, Durazzo v. BRG West Village LLC 16-cv-02232, the plaintiff alleges that he was denied the opportunity to purchase his West Village Apartment because he has cancer, in violation of the federal Fair Housing Act. (He also asserts claims for breach of contract.)

The federal Fair Housing Act, codified at 42 U.S.C. § 3601 et seq. (among other things) makes it “unlawful … [t]o discriminate in the sale or rental, or to otherwise make unavailable or deny, a dwelling to any buyer or renter because of a handicap of — (A) that buyer or renter[;] (B) a person residing in or intending to reside in that dwelling after it is so sold, rented, or made available; or (C) any person associated with that buyer or renter.”

Among plaintiff’s factual contentions are that in a letter, the owner of the subject apartment’s owner’s attorney “rejected [plaintiff]’s efforts to purchase his apartment, stating that as a stage-4 cancer patient [plaintiff] is not the typical person buying an apartment to live in.”