University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name National Fair Housing Alliance v. S.C. Bodner Co. FH-IN-0008
Docket / Court 1:10-cv-00993 ( S.D. Ind. )
State/Territory Indiana
Case Type(s) Fair Housing/Lending/Insurance
Case Summary
This is a case about fair housing and discrimination against people with disabilities. The plaintiffs were three nonprofits who focus on accessible housing for people with disabilities represented by a civil right firm and private counsel. The defendants were eighteen different companies that build, ... read more >
This is a case about fair housing and discrimination against people with disabilities. The plaintiffs were three nonprofits who focus on accessible housing for people with disabilities represented by a civil right firm and private counsel. The defendants were eighteen different companies that build, own, or rent out housing properties. In 2010, the plaintiffs sued the defendants on the basis of the Fair Housing Amendments Act (FHAA) for failing to meet accessibility specifications for multi-family apartment buildings. The plaintiffs alleged that the defendants’ properties were deficient in numerous respects, such as with inaccessible public-use and common-use areas, and inaccessible in-room furnishings such as kitchen and bathroom spaces. Among other relief, plaintiffs sought a court declaration that the defendants’ conduct violated the FHAA, an injunction that the defendants comply with the FHAA for all existing and future units, and compensatory damages. The case, which proceeded in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, was assigned to Judge Richard L. Young.

Five defendants filed a motion to dismiss but their motion was rejected by the court on February 17, 2012. 844 F. Supp. 2d 940. The court noted that it understood “the Fair Housing Act to be a broad and inclusive antidiscrimination mandate from Congress, and the Supreme Court has stated on several occasions that it must be given a generous construction.” The court also found that the presence of all five of the moving defendants was necessary for the plaintiffs to succeed.

Over the next five years, the parties engaged in settlement talks. Several of the defendants hired neutral third-party inspectors to evaluate the plaintiffs’ claims, and these inspectors concurred with the plaintiffs. Individually or with subsets of the defendants, the plaintiffs secured compensatory settlement payments; commitments from the defendants to make internal and external design changes to their properties in order to meet FHAA; and notice to residents and the public of these properties about the changes. The exact payment amounts don't appear to be public, so we don't know how much the defendants agreed to pay the plaintiffs. Upon sufficient completion, the plaintiffs agreed to release the defendants from the suit with prejudice and without any additional costs. The plaintiffs’ stipulated judgment with defendant LBM Realty, approved by the court on July 13, 2011 and available in the Clearinghouse, is representative of the other stipulated judgments.

By December 16, 2016, the court dismissed nearly all of the defendants (with the exception of Brooklyn Place). As of November 5, 2021, there has been no further activity on the docket, and so there is no reason to think that the case is ongoing.

Achutha Raman - 11/05/2021


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Content of Injunction
Develop anti-discrimination policy
Discrimination Prohibition
Reporting
Required disclosure
Defendant-type
Multi-family housing provider
General
Housing
Plaintiff Type
Non-profit NON-religious organization
Causes of Action Fair Housing Act/Fair Housing Amendments Act (FHAA), 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601 et seq.
Defendant(s) Brooklyn Place TIC I
Cross Lake Apartments, LLC
Huntsville Main Street Apartments LLC
LBM Realty, LLC
MBA Construction LLC
Morgan Crescent at Wolfchase Apartments LLC
Morgan Overlook Apartments LLC
Mountain Ranch Apartments LLC
Mountaineer Place Apartments, LLC
Pavilion Apartments at Plantation Way
Reserve Apartments, LLC
Retreat Apartments of Mobile LLC
S.C. Bodner Company
Spring Lake Apartments Limited Partnership
Twin Creek Apartments LLC
Village at Quail Springs Apartments, LLC
Village at Rice Hope Apartments
Whispering Ridge Apartments LLC
Plaintiff Description National Fair Housing Alliance (NFHA), a national nonprofit that advocates for accessible housing for people with disabilities; Savannah-Chatham County Fair Housing Council (SCFHC), a Georgia non-profit that seeks to promote equal housing opportunities for protected classes, including people with disabilities; and Metro Fair-Housing Services (MFHS), an Atlanta non-profit that seeks to eliminate housing and lending inequities for all people, including those with disabilities
Class action status sought No
Class action status outcome Not sought
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Attorneys fees
Damages
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Filed 08/05/2010
Case Ongoing No reason to think so
Additional Resources
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  See this case at CourtListener.com (May provide additional documents and, for active cases, real-time alerts)
  The Origins of Fair Lending Litigation
Date: Dec. 4, 2008
By: Andrew Nash (Washington University in St. Louis Law Student)
[ Detail ] [ PDF ] [ External Link ]

Court Docket(s)
S.D. Ind.
12/22/2016
1:10-cv-00993-RLY-DML
FH-IN-0008-9000.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
S.D. Ind.
08/05/2010
Complaint [ECF# 1]
FH-IN-0008-0004.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D. Ind.
05/10/2011
Amended Complaint [ECF# 96]
FH-IN-0008-0001.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D. Ind.
07/13/2011
Stipulated Judgment [ECF# 129]
FH-IN-0008-0002.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D. Ind.
02/17/2012
Entry on Defendants' Motions to Dismiss [ECF# 154] (844 F.Supp.2d 940)
FH-IN-0008-0003.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
show all people docs
Judges Lynch, Debra McVicker (S.D. Ind.) [Magistrate] show/hide docs
FH-IN-0008-9000
Young, Richard L. (S.D. Ind.) show/hide docs
FH-IN-0008-0002 | FH-IN-0008-0003 | FH-IN-0008-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Allen, Michael Gerhart (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
FH-IN-0008-0001 | FH-IN-0008-0002 | FH-IN-0008-0004 | FH-IN-0008-9000
Dane, Stephen M. (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
FH-IN-0008-0001 | FH-IN-0008-0002 | FH-IN-0008-0004 | FH-IN-0008-9000
Emry, John William Jr (Indiana) show/hide docs
FH-IN-0008-0001 | FH-IN-0008-0002 | FH-IN-0008-0004 | FH-IN-0008-9000
Keary, Thomas J. (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
FH-IN-0008-0001 | FH-IN-0008-0002 | FH-IN-0008-0004
Defendant's Lawyers Cassman, Stephen Lynn (Indiana) show/hide docs
FH-IN-0008-9000
Parish, Theresa Renee (Indiana) show/hide docs
FH-IN-0008-9000
Parkinson, Charles F.G. (Indiana) show/hide docs
FH-IN-0008-0002
Trimble, John Carl (Indiana) show/hide docs
FH-IN-0008-9000

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