ABA, Groups Welcome Amendment to Limit ‘Disparate Impact’

ABA and several housing groups today urged the House to pass an amendment that would prevent the use of disparate impact analysis by the Department of Housing and Urban Development under the Fair Housing Act.

The amendment was offered by Rep. Scott Garrett (R-N.J.) to the government spending bill for housing agencies. The House approved a similar amendment attached to a government funding bill for the Justice Department.

“Our member companies use facially neutral standards, such as loan-to-value ratios and debt-to-income ratios in mortgage underwriting and for resident screening purposes because they are neutral and nondiscriminatory,” the groups said. “Under HUD’s rule, a lender, apartment owner, apartment manager or housing cooperative could be challenged if these practices yield different results for a protected class, and also face severe reputational harm and significant costs of defense.”