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Landlords Briefed on New Leasing Protections for Domestic-Violence Survivors

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The Lexington Fair Housing Council and the Kentucky Coalition Against Domestic Violence are offering free webinars about the new law. (Greg Stotelmyer)
The Lexington Fair Housing Council and the Kentucky Coalition Against Domestic Violence are offering free webinars about the new law. (Greg Stotelmyer)
August 14, 2017

FRANKFORT, Ky. – Since June 29, new leasing protections have been in place in Kentucky for survivors of domestic, dating and sexual violence, as well as stalking.

Now the focus is on training landlords on how the law impacts them.

Art Crosby, executive director of the Lexington Fair Housing Council, says the goal is to help landlords understand what happens when a renter needs to leave home quickly.

"It will provide them guidance on what they can ask for and the time frames that they need to do it in,” Crosby points out. “Our experience is that most housing providers really want to do the right thing. They just kind of sometimes need a guidance or help understanding what their responsibilities are."

The Lexington Fair Housing Council and the Kentucky Coalition Against Domestic Violence are offering free webinars about the new law.

The 90-minute training sessions will review the legal rights of protected tenants, as well as new protections put in place for the landlords.

For more information on the new law and the webinars, click on kcadv.org.

The law gives survivors with a long-term protective order the ability to get out of their lease and not take a hit on their credit and rental histories.

Crosby hopes that will help reduce barriers that often keep victims from fleeing their perpetrator.

"They want to move away but they don't want to break their lease because they know that would really impact their ability to find future housing and their credit would be destroyed,” he states. “So they're really caught in the middle. We get all those calls on a pretty regular basis."

Survivors must give their landlord a 30-day written notice. And, landlords can now bar a perpetrator from the property, terminate a perpetrator's name from a lease, and evict and deny a perpetrator access to the housing unit, while still holding a perpetrator liable for fees, damages and unpaid rent.

That only applies to leases signed since the new law went into effect. Meanwhile, survivors can change their locks at their own expense as long as they tell their landlord.

Greg Stotelmyer , Public News Service - KY