Mortgage has settled a suit brought by the Department of Housing and Urban
Development (HUD) for alleged discrimination.
The suit charges that the Trumbull, Connecticut company violated the
Fair Housing Act by requiring a mortgage applicant who was on paid maternity
leave to return to work before it would approve her loan.
Fair Housing Act prohibits discrimination in the sale, rental, and
financing of dwellings, and in other housing-related transactions, based on
race, color, national origin, religion, sex, familial status, and
disability. HUD said that refusing to approve a mortgage loan because a
woman is pregnant or on maternity leave violates the Fair Housing Act's
prohibitions against sex and familial status discrimination.
to John Trasviña, Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing & Equal Opportunity,
HUD has been investigating lenders who have allegedly required women to
terminate their maternity leave early in order to qualify for a home loan since
2010. HUD settled similar cases with Bank
of America and Mortgage Guarantee Insurance Corp in the summer of 2012.
the PNC case HUD said that the mortgage company required the woman, a Navy
veteran, to return to work before approving the Department of Veterans Affairs-guaranteed
loan. Consequently the couple could not
close on their new home in Newington, CT, until a month later than they had
planned. Because of the delay, the seller of the home allegedly
required the couple to pay an additional $3,000.
the Agreement, PNC will pay $15,000 to the couple and review applications for
VA-guaranteed residential mortgage loans filed in the last two years in the six
New England states, Pennsylvania, and New York to identify qualified loan
seekers whose applications were denied because they were pregnant or on
maternity leave. PNC will pay $7,500
each victim who is identified, revise its Temporary Leave/Short-Term Disability
Income policy if HUD finds that the policy is deficient, and will provide fair
lending training to its residential mortgage loan originators, underwriters,
Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity and its partners in the Fair
Housing Assistance Program investigate almost 10,000 housing discrimination
complaints each year.