Emotional Support Animals

Emotional Support Animals are a big topic for independent rental owners and property managers these days.  We field numerous calls on the topic each week.

Fair Housing laws, unlike the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which covers places open to the public, requires housing providers to allow qualified individuals with disabilities reasonable accommodation for both types of Assistance Animals:  service and companion animals. Under the ADA, only true service animals, which the U.S. Department of Justice defines as mainly dogs, are allowed. However, under the Fair Housing laws, both service and companion animals are allowed if an individual with a disability qualifies for these animals as a reasonable accommodation. “Emotional support” or “therapy” animals are the same as “companion” animals and must be given the same consideration as service animals. Further, unlike the ADA, not only are companion animals allowed, but they do not have to be limited to dogs.

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