2015 Nebraska Revised Statutes
Chapter 20 - CIVIL RIGHTS
20-319 Handicapped person; discriminatory practices prohibited; design and construction standards; enforcement of act.
20-319. Handicapped person; discriminatory practices prohibited; design and construction standards; enforcement of act.
(1) Except as exempted by section 20-322, it shall be unlawful to:
(a) Discriminate in the sale or rental of or otherwise make unavailable or deny a dwelling to any buyer or renter because of a handicap of:
(i) The buyer or renter;
(ii) Any person associated with the buyer or renter; or
(iii) A person residing in or intending to reside in the dwelling after it is so sold, rented, or made available; or
(b) Discriminate against any person in the terms, conditions, or privileges of sale or rental of a dwelling or in the provision of services or facilities in connection with a dwelling because of a handicap of:
(i) Such person;
(ii) Any person associated with such person; or
(iii) A person residing in or intending to reside in the dwelling after it is so sold, rented, or made available.
(2) For purposes of this section, discrimination shall include:
(a) A refusal to permit, at the expense of the handicapped person, reasonable modifications of existing premises occupied or to be occupied by the person if the modifications may be necessary to afford the person full enjoyment of the premises, except that in the case of a rental, the landlord may, when it is reasonable to do so, condition permission for a modification on the renter agreeing to restore the interior of the premises to the condition that existed before the modification, reasonable wear and tear excepted;
(b) A refusal to make reasonable accommodations in rules, policies, practices, or services when such accommodations may be necessary to afford the handicapped person equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling; and
(c) In connection with the design and construction of covered multifamily dwellings for first occupancy after September 1, 1991, a failure to design and construct the dwellings in such a manner that:
(i) The public use and common use portions of the dwellings are readily accessible to and usable by handicapped persons;
(ii) All the doors designed to allow passage into and within all premises within the dwellings are sufficiently wide to allow passage by handicapped persons in wheelchairs; and
(iii) All premises within the dwellings contain the following features of adaptive design:
(A) An accessible route into and through the dwelling;
(B) Light switches, electrical outlets, thermostats, and other environmental controls in accessible locations;
(C) Reinforcements in bathroom walls to allow later installation of grab bars; and
(D) Kitchens and bathrooms such that a handicapped person in a wheelchair can maneuver about the space.
(3) Compliance with the appropriate requirements of the American National Standards Institute standard for buildings and facilities providing accessibility and usability for physically handicapped people, ANSI A117.1, shall satisfy the requirements of subdivision (2)(c)(iii) of this section.
(4)(a) If a political subdivision has incorporated into its laws the design and construction requirements set forth in subdivision (2)(c) of this section, compliance with such laws shall be deemed to satisfy the requirements.
(b) A political subdivision may review and approve new constructed covered multifamily dwellings for the purpose of making determinations as to whether the design and construction requirements are met.
(c) The commission shall encourage but may not require political subdivisions to include in their existing procedures for the review and approval of new constructed covered multifamily dwellings determinations as to whether the design and construction of the dwellings are consistent with the design and construction requirements and shall provide technical assistance to political subdivisions and other persons to implement the requirements.
(d) Nothing in this section shall be construed to require the commission to review or approve the plans, designs, or construction of all covered multifamily dwellings to determine whether the design and construction of the dwellings are consistent with the design and construction requirements.
(5)(a) Nothing in subsection (4) of this section shall be construed to affect the authority and responsibility of the commission or a local agency certified pursuant to section 20-332 to receive and process complaints or otherwise engage in enforcement activities under the Nebraska Fair Housing Act.
(b) Determinations by the commission or a political subdivision under subdivision (4)(a) or (b) of this section shall not be conclusive in enforcement proceedings under the act.
(6) For purposes of this section, covered multifamily dwellings shall mean:
(a) Buildings consisting of four or more units if such buildings have one or more elevators; and
(b) Ground floor units in other buildings consisting of four or more units.
(7) Nothing in this section shall be construed to invalidate or limit any law of a political subdivision or other jurisdiction in which this section is effective that requires dwellings to be designed and constructed in a manner that affords handicapped persons greater access than is required by this section.
(8) Nothing in this section shall require that a dwelling be made available to an individual whose tenancy would constitute a direct threat to the health or safety of other individuals or whose tenancy would result in substantial physical damage to the property of others.
- Laws 1991, LB 825, § 20;
- Laws 1998, LB 1073, § 5.
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