Accusing someone of having a fake emotional support animal letter could be a serious housing discrimination violation, but property managers & homeowners associations are getting flooded with requests to waive their pet rules to accommodate potentially fake service animals and emotional support animals.

Emotional Support Animal Letter Review

HUD’s accommodation review process permits the property owner to request “reliable documentation” from the disabled person which should verify the disability, and the need for their ESA as well as the need for a requested accommodation.  The housing provider is usually given an “ESA Letter,” or some other documentation [aka “doctor’s letter”] which needs to be properly evaluated.

So what are the criteria for a fair housing friendly review of their ‘reliable’ documentation?

Our emotional support animal letter review would consider the following elements:

  1. Source “reliability”
  2. Disability verification
  3. Disability-related need verification
  4. Accommodation Requested
  5. Financial & Administrative burden
  6. Direct threat to Health & Safety
  7. Risk of substantial physical damage

FHA can provide critical feedback about the “ESA Letter” so the property manager can independently take next steps on their own in the interactive dialogue process to avoid potential discrimination pitfalls.

FHA’s ESA Letter Review is also part of our Property Pro and Training Pro platforms offered to housing providers seeking to reduce their exposure to litigation risk.  Both platforms provide this service in addition to monthly training, consulting, and other fair housing related services provided by FHA’s experts.

FHA also provides Fair Housing Property Training independently for any property management company, landlord, condominium or homeowners association.

FHA would provide academic feedback based only upon the language of the ESA Letter.  FHA does not provide legal advice regarding the tenant’s housing eligibility requirements.  The ESA Letter Review focuses solely on the construction of the letter and is not meant to be a strict “pass/no-pass” for the applicant’s housing eligibility since many factors are considered by the housing provider FHA would not have access to.

Interested in a no-cost, no risk, trial of our ESA Letter Review?  

Contact us and request a “Free ESA Letter Review.”  We’ll invite you to share one ESA Letter for our review, and you will receive a two page analysis via email.