On or Off-Campus College Housing and COVID-19

Disability Rights Texas Handout

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If you would like to speak with someone about your rights at college, text COLLEGE to 512-229-9109.

On or Off-Campus College Housing and COVID-19

COVID-19 and college housing

Do you or someone you know have:

If so, you can ask your landlord to change their policy to accommodate your needs to allow you out of your lease early without paying penalties, fines, or fees.

Asking for an accommodation

To ask for an accommodation:
Tell your landlord in writing (even e-mail or text would work) what is happening and explain what you need.

If the landlord does not respond or says no, make sure you let them know that you are asking for a reasonable accommodation

If the landlord asks for more information or proof, it is a good idea to provide your landlord with a note from someone that is in a position to know about your situation (such as a doctor/nurse, therapist, social worker, or even a close friend that knows the situation) that explains why you need the accommodation.

If the landlord still refuses, reach out to housing@DRTx.org. We may be able to help.

Sample accommodation letter

(Note: You should change the bold portions of this accommodation letter to fit your circumstances.)

Dear Landlord,

I am writing to ask for a reasonable accommodation as a person with disabilities that impact my ability to sleep and function. I live at 123 Road Dr., City, Texas.

You have a policy of requiring tenants to fulfill their lease or pay penalties, fees, and fines to end the lease early. I request an accommodation to that policy. Specifically, I request that you allow me to end my lease early with no additional fees, fines, or penalties. I need this accommodation because continuing to live in this apartment is making my anxiety worse. Staying here is making it harder for me to sleep and function.

I would appreciate a response in writing within 5 days. Please let me know if you have any questions about my request for a reasonable accommodation. Thank you for your consideration and I look forward to receiving your reply.

Sincerely,

Resident

Housing accommodation request example

For example, some landlords will not allow you to move to another apartment during the year. However, if you live with someone that is unwilling to follow federal or state precautions against COVID-19 and it is making your anxiety worse or you are immunocompromised or otherwise at risk, you can ask the landlord to allow you to move into another unit without penalty. In this example, if the landlord refuses to remedy the situation, you may request to end your lease early if living with the roommate.

If you need assistance with any of the issues describe above, please call us. We are a nonprofit organization, and there is NO charge for our services. For help, contact us in any of the following ways:

 

Created: August 5, 2020
Publication Code: HS10


www.DRTx.org
Statewide Intake: 1-800-252-9108
Sign Language Video Phone: 1-866-362-2851
Purple 2 Video Phone: 512-271-9391
Online Intake available 24/7: intake.DRTx.org

Disclaimer: Disability Rights Texas strives to update its materials on an annual basis, and this handout is based upon the law at the time it was written. The law changes frequently and is subject to various interpretations by different courts. Future changes in the law may make some information in this handout inaccurate.

The handout is not intended to and does not replace an attorney’s advice or assistance based on your particular situation.