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Chelsae Lakin with her mother.

Lakin v Fontaine Gardens Apartments

#W15-10 | Location: Saginaw | Court Level: Federal | Settlement: Non-disclosed

Categories: Familial Status, Mental / Emotional Disability, Physical Disability, Race, Rental
Tags: Children

On her first day at a new job, rental agent Chelsae Lakin contacted the Fair Housing Center of Southeast & Mid Michigan to report the owners of Fontaine Gardens Apartments in Saginaw, Michigan. According to the complaint, Ms. Lakin stated that the owner, Dr. Sakti Pramanik, told her that only one person or a couple could rent a one bedroom apartment, thus making those units off limits to a parent and child.

According to the lawsuit filed on October 14, 2015, between January and May 2015, Ms. Lakin learned that the “Defendants also stated and held a discriminatory preference for non-disabled tenants over similarly situated disabled tenants [as well as] stated and held a discriminatory racial preference for white tenants over black tenants.” The lawsuit also states that Ms. Lakin repeatedly informed Dr. and Mrs. Pramanik that it was illegal to discriminate in the rental of housing on the basis of a protected status – that their practices were against fair housing law – but they would not change their policies.

Chelsae Lakin accepted an undisclosed amount to settle her federal fair housing case in October 3, 2016. The suit was filed by FHC Cooperating Attorneys Stephen M. Dane and Jia Cobb from Relman, Dane, & Colfax, with assistance from local Cooperating Attorney Thomas Daniels of Pear, Sperling, Eggan, & Daniels. The case was assigned to the Honorable Thomas L. Ludington, a Federal Judge in the Eastern District of Michigan. FHC Board of Directors presented Chelsae Lakin with the first Fair Housing Board of Directors Award at our 2017 Fair Housing Breakfast. Chelsae was honored for “boldly standing up for equal housing opportunity in her role as a housing professional.”

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