Beverly Hills, Los Angeles & Santa Monica Housing Discrimination Lawyer

Civil Litigation Attorney Jeffrey Cowan provides experienced legal representation to individuals in Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, Los Angeles, and throughout California. Contact The Cowan Law Firm for skilled assistance in your housing discrimination matter.

California and federal laws prohibit housing discrimination. This means that landowners, landlords and sub-lessors – and anyone acting on their behalf (like real estate brokers and salespeople) – may not discriminate when renting or selling a home (or other real estate) based on either personal or group characteristics that the law protects because they have no relation to legitimate business needs. These protected characteristics include race, national origin, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, ancestry, disability (mental and physical), marital status, familial status (presence of children under 18 in the home, pregnant women), or source of income. As further discussed below, housing discrimination law also forbids sexual harassment by landlords and sellers or buyers of property.

The federal ban (codified in 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601-3619) applies to all real property that is intended to be used as a long or short term residence, including the following:

The federal ban also applies to almost all housing transactions, such as sale, rental, and mortgaging of land or homes. There are a few exemptions:

Fair Housing in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles & Santa Monica, California is Guaranteed by Law

California’s ban on housing discrimination goes further than federal law. Codified in Government Code §12900 et seq. (the Fair Employment Housing Act; aka “FEHA”) and The Unruh Civil Rights Act (Civil Code § 51), California’s anti-discrimination law applies to any type of housing that can be labeled a "business establishment," which includes operators of hotels, motels, and mobile park homes. It also extends to real estate agents, brokers, and condominium homeowners' associations.

Both California law and federal law forbid the following housing practices based on the protected group characteristics listed above:

California law further forbids the following practices:

Civil Litigation Lawyer Cowan fights for Fair Housing in CA

Housing discrimination also occurs when landowners, landlords, sub-lessors – and anyone acting on their behalf – engage in sexual harassment when renting or selling a home. Sexual harassment in the housing context is analogous to how it occurs in the employment context. It includes the following:

Sexual harassment can victimize men and women, and perpetrators can be of the same or opposite gender as the victim. A landlord or manager who knew or should have known about sexual harassment by an agent or employee and did not stop it can also be held responsible.

Contact Housing Discrimination Attorney Jeffrey Cowan

Equally important, it is unlawful for a landlord to retaliate against a tenant for reporting, opposing or complaining about sexual harassment. Examples of unlawful retaliation include the following:

If your situation involves any of the above matters, please call experienced Housing Discrimination Attorneys at The Cowan Law Firm today, (310) 394-1420.

Call (310) 394-1420

9301 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 609

Beverly Hills, California 90210

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The Cowan Law Firm

The Cowan Law Firm

Phone: (310) 394-1420

Fax:  (310) 394-1430


Two Locations


9301 Wilshire Blvd.

Suite 609

Beverly Hills, CA 90210


401 Wilshire Blvd., 12th Floor

Santa Monica CA 90401