United States District Court, E.D. Virginia, Alexandria Division
Ellis, III United Stutes District Judge
issue in this housing discrimination case are the
parties' cross motions for summary judgment. On May 23,
2016, plaintiffs, eight current or former residents of Waples
Mobile Home Park (“the Park”), filed a six-count
Complaint against the Park's owners and
operators in response to defendants' enforcement
of a policy (the “Policy”) that, in
plaintiffs' view, (1) impermissibly discriminates on the
basis of race, national origin, alienage, and citizenship,
(2) violates the terms of their lease agreements, and (3)
violates a Virginia statute regulating mobile home parks.
Plaintiffs comprise four married couples, and each plaintiff
is a non-citizen of Salvadorian or Bolivian national origin.
remaining causes of action are:
• Count I: Violation of the Fair Housing Act
(“FHA”), 42 U.S.C. § 3601 et seq.
(brought by all plaintiffs);
• Count II: Violation of the Virginia Fair Housing Law
(“VFHL”), Va. Code § 36-96.3 et
seq. (brought by all plaintiffs);
• Count III: Violation of the Virginia Manufactured Home
Lot Rental Act (the “Rental Act”), Va. Code
§ 55-248.41 et seq. (brought by only the male
• Count IV: Violation of 42 U.S.C. § 1981 (brought
by all plaintiffs); and
• Count V: Breach of contract (brought by only the male
summary judgment motions have been fully briefed and argued
orally, they are now ripe for disposition. For the reasons
that follow, defendants' motion must be granted in part
and denied in part, and plaintiffs' cross motion must be
following undisputed material facts are derived from the
parties' statements of fact, as well as the summary
• Each plaintiff is an adult Latino of Salvadorian or
Bolivian national origin who currently resides in Virginia.
None of the plaintiffs is a United States citizen.
• The female plaintiffs entered the United States
illegally and thus are unlawfully present in the country.
• The male plaintiffs have passed criminal background
checks, have Social Security Numbers, and had sufficient
income and credit to rent lots at the Park.
• The four male plaintiffs were able to enter leases at
the Park. Their wives, the four female plaintiffs, were not
signatories on the leases.
• The lease application forms required the male
plaintiffs to list all adult occupants of the male
plaintiffs' mobile homes.
• Three of the male plaintiffs did not list their wives
on their lease applications.
• Nevertheless, the female plaintiffs lived with their
husbands in the Park, which is located within the Eastern
District of Virginia.
• Plaintiffs' children reside with plaintiffs and
are United States citizens with Social Security Numbers.
• By 2014, defendants knew that Mr. Reyes's wife was
living at the Park with her husband.
• Before 2015, the male plaintiffs were also able to-and
did-renew year-long leases at the Park until 2015.
• Yet, in 2015, defendants enforced the Policy for the
male plaintiffs' lease renewals, requiring the male
plaintiffs to submit documentation for all adult occupants in
the plaintiffs' homes.
• At the relevant time periods, the Policy required all
applicants seeking to rent at the Park to provide
government-issued photo identification (including a
Passport), and proof of lawful presence in the United States,
such as a Social Security Card.
• The Policy further provided that “Applicants who
do not have a Social Security number must provide their
original Passport, original U.S. Visa[, ] and original
Arrival/Departure Form (I-94 or I-94W).” Compl. Ex. A.
• Similarly, defendants' “Future Resident
Information Guides” published on May 13, 2015 and March
31, 2016 also state that adults without a Social Security
Number must provide an original passport, original U.S. Visa,
and original I-94 forms in order to reside at the Park.
• Today, residents at the Park may satisfy the Policy by
producing documents besides an original passport, such as (1)
a permanent resident card (Form 1-551 or I-151), (2) a
temporary resident card (Form I-688A), or (3) a border
• Because the female plaintiffs entered the United
States illegally, they cannot satisfy the Policy. In other
words, because the female plaintiffs are illegal aliens, they
do not have- and cannot acquire-a U.S. Visa, an original I-94
form, or any authentic document to prove their lawful
residence in the United States.
• Once defendants began enforcing the Policy, the male
plaintiffs would have been able to renew their leases
provided they complied with the Policy and ensured that each
adult occupant in their homes had supplied defendants with
the requisite documents to show lawful presence in the United
• Defendants never used the male plaintiffs'
statuses as Latinos to deny the male plaintiffs the right to
enter into rental agreements at the Park.
• Defendants never used the male plaintiffs'
statuses as non-U.S. citizens to deny the male plaintiffs the
right to enter into rental agreements at the Park.
• Other Latinos and non-United States citizens entered
into leases at the Park in 2015 and 2016-the same period of
defendants' alleged discrimination against plaintiffs.
• Some of the individuals who entered into leases at the
Park in 2015 and 2016 were Latino non-citizens.
• Approximately 60% of the residents at the Park are
• As of 2014, defendants advertised to Latinos for one
of defendants' related properties.
• Defendants employ Latinos and Spanish-speakers in the
Park's property management office.
• The male plaintiffs do not read English, but
nonetheless were able to execute leases at the Park.
• Some of the male plaintiffs permitted adults to reside
in plaintiffs' mobile homes in the Park even though those
adults were not listed on the male plaintiffs' leases or
• In March 2014, defendants reminded plaintiff Reyes
that his wife needed to satisfy the Policy for her to
continue residing at the Park.
• Notwithstanding the fact that his wife could not
satisfy the Policy, Mr. Reyes was permitted to renew his
lease at the Park for another one-year term, from June 1,
2014 to May 31, 2015.
• In March 2015, Mr. Reyes was again reminded of the
Policy. The Reyes family did not provide the requisite
documents to satisfy the Policy.
• Later that same month, March 2015, defendants provided
Mr. Reyes oral notice that he would be placed on a
month-to-month lease and that his monthly rent would increase
by $100 in part because an occupant in his residence could
not comply with the Policy.
• On January 7, 2016, defendants sent plaintiff Moya
Yrapura a letter, warning that his wife had not yet complied
with the Policy. The January 7 letter advised that Mr. Moya
Yrapura should submit his wife's occupant application and
documentation by January 11, 2016.
• Because Mrs. Moya Yrapura is illegally present in the
United States, she was unable to provide the documents
required by the Policy.
• On January 18, 2016-13 days before Mr. Moya
Yrapura's year-long lease was set to expire-defendants
placed him on a month-to-month lease and increased his
monthly rent by $100 in part because an occupant in his
residence could not satisfy the Policy.
• In January 2016, defendants informed plaintiff Saravia
Cruz that his wife would need to comply with the Policy in
order for him to renew his lease.
• Because Mr. Saravia Cruz's wife, Ms. Amaya, is
illegally present in the United States, she was unable to
provide the ...