Federal officials have accused owners of an apartment building in Burlingame of discriminating against a family with two young children.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development announced this week that it is filing suit against Melinda Teruel and the Melinda Bautista Teruel 1992 Revocable Trust for violating the fair housing law by allegedly pressuring the family to pay a larger unit in the complex to rent.
The couple began renting a one-bedroom unit in the complex in 2017 while expecting their first child. Even before moving into the apartment, Teruel was unhappy that a child would live in the unit and suggested the couple rent a larger, more expensive unit instead, officials said.
After learning in 2019 that the couple was expecting a second child, Teruel increasingly pressured them to move to a new unit. complaint in the case.
Feeling harassed and concerned about their eviction, the family left the complex in the summer of 2020. The couple filed a complaint with HUD the following year.
Teruel was not immediately available for comment.
The case will be heard by a federal administrative judge. If the judge rules that the couple was discriminated against, the family can get compensation.
“The Department’s commitment to vigorously enforcing the Fair Housing Act is having a real impact on families with children, pregnant individuals and the communities we serve,” said Demetria L. McCain, HUD’s deputy assistant secretary for fair housing and equal opportunities.