New HUD Guidance on Assistance Animals

The U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) issued new guidance this week clarifying best practices for housing providers in handling reasonable accommodation requests related to assistance animals. 

The Fair Housing Act prohibits discrimination in housing against people with disabilities and requires housing providers to permit a change or exception to a rule, policy, practice, or service that may be necessary to provide people with disabilities an equal opportunity to use and enjoy their home.  A common reasonable accommodation is an exception to a “no pets” policy for a person who requires an assistance animal, such as a service or emotional support animal. 

HUD’s new “Assistance Animal Notice” offers a step-by-step set of best practices for complying with the Fair Housing Act when assessing accommodation requests involving animals. 

Read HUD’s press release and the full notice about the new guidance here.