Fair Housing: It's Your Right!

Fair Housing Act

The Fair Housing Act was enacted in 1968 to end housing discrimination on the basis of a person’s protected class. The Fair Housing Act of 1968 made it illegal for housing providers to discriminate against individuals on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, or religion. In 1988, Congress amended the Fair Housing Act and included two additional protected classes; disability and familial status. In 2012, HUD issued a final rule to ensure its core programs are open to all eligible individuals and families regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity, and marital status.

Federally Protected Classes

  • Disability - includes people with HIV / AIDS and people in recovery from alcohol / drugs
  • Race / Color
  • Religion
  • Sex - includes protection against sexual harassment
  • Familial Status - includes the presence of children under the age of 18 and / or pregnancy
  • National Origin
  • In HUD programs -Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity, and Marital Status
File a Federal Complaint: If you feel your rights have been violated as a member of a federally protected class, please contact the Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity to file a complaint. Call 1-800-877-7353, toll free; (303) 672-5437, general intake; or TTY 303-672-5248.

State Fair Housing - Protected Classes

The Montana Human Rights Act was enacted in 1965 and prohibits discrimination on several of the federally protected classes and added the following classes:  

  • Marital Status
  • Creed
  • Age
File a State Complaint: You may also file a complaint under state law (within 180 days after the discriminatory activity occurred) with the Montana Human Rights Bureau by calling 1-800-542-0807.

Assistance with Fair Housing Issues

For more information on either Federal or Montana protected classes, contact Montana Fair Housing at 1-800-929-2611.

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The work that provided the basis for this publication was supported by funding under a grant with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. The substance and findings of the work are dedicated to the public. The author and publisher are solely responsible for the accuracy of the statements and interpretations contained in this publication. Such interpretations do not necessarily reflect the views of the Federal Government.