Brief Supporting Tenants Right to Sue Under PTFA
On August 25, 2010 the Law Center joined the National Housing Law Project (NHLP) and a number of other partners in submitting an amicus brief to the US Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, supporting a tenant who sued her landlord under the Protecting Tenants in Foreclosure Act (PTFA), wanting to stay in her unit as allowed under the law. The case was dismissed because the trial judge decided that PTFA does not allow tenants to use the law pro-actively to sue for violations - they can only use the law as a defense in a suit brought by their landlord to get them removed from a property. Unfortunately, reading the law in this way severely limits its applicability, because in most states tenants do not have sufficient time to file a claim based on PTFA after a landlord has filed for their eviction. The Law Center's brief argues that tenants should have the right to sue under PTFA, since Congress wanted the law to be enforced and did not provide any other method of doing so.