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Theresa L. Kitay

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Theresa L. "Terry" Kitay focuses her practice on defense and preventive representation of clients in the housing industry in all civil rights matters, including fair housing, Section 504, Title VI, and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Professional Biography


Terry's clients include many of the leading residential housing providers and public housing authorities in the country. She provides representation for consultation, conciliation, administrative matters and state and federal court litigation and appeals. Her practice places particular emphasis on advice regarding disability and accessibility issues, including compliance with the Fair Housing Act and building code requirements for accessibility in the design and construction of new multifamily housing. Terry is a California Certified Accessibility Specialist (CASp) and an Accessibility Inspector/Plans Examiner certified by the International Code Council. She was formerly a trial attorney for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Terry’s enforcement background with HUD, combined with extensive experience in the defense representation of housing professionals since leaving HUD, have given her a unique ability to assist clients who face civil rights issues or wish to avoid them in the future.

Terry is a frequent source and contributor on fair housing, accessibility, and related topics to such national publications as Units and Fair Housing Coach. She routinely serves as a subject matter expert on fair housing and accessibility for the National Apartment Association and has also testified before the U.S. House of Representatives on these issues.

  • Advised client regarding accessibility compliance of a multifamily asset for potential acquisition, including evaluation of potential liability and exposure.

  • Negotiated settlement of pattern and practice accessibility compliance investigation by the Department of Justice for client's portfolio of new construction multifamily assets.

  • Defended multifamily management company against allegations of disparate impact racial discrimination allegedly resulting from the use of criminal history screening.

  • Member – National Multifamily Housing Council
  • Member – National Apartment Association
    • Fair Housing and Accessibility Task Force – National Apartment Association
    • Fair Housing Task Force – Atlanta Apartment Association
  • Member – Wilmington Apartment Association
  • Steering Committee Member – Fair Housing and Public Accommodation Subsection of the State Bar of California
  • Member – Fair Housing Coach Board of Advisors
  • AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell
  • "Assistance Animal Issues – Update," The Habitat Group (webinar) (October 2020)
  • "Fair Housing," National Government Affairs Roundtable and Legal Symposium (July 2019)
  • "Must-Know Fair Housing Trends and Compliance Strategies for 2019," National Apartment Association Annual Education Conference (January 2019)
  • "The ABCs of HUD: Fair Housing Seminar," South East Florida Apartment Association (SEFAA) (April 2018)
  • "From the Front Lines: ADA Update on the Latest Issues and Trends for Shopping Centers," International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) (October 2013)
  • In-depth training programs on fair housing and accessibility compliance provided on demand.

Industries

Education

  • Harvard University Graduate School of Design – Executive Education
    • ADA, ABA, and 504 Access to Public, Private, and Federal Non-Residential Facilities and Programs, August 2016
    • Fair Housing, ADA, ABA, and 504 Access to Housing and Dorms, August 2016
    • Housing Accessibility, June 2015
    • Accessibility: Compliance, Comparisons, and Communications, July 2013
  • Emory University School of Law, J.D., 1987, with distinction
  • Smith College, A.B., 1984, cum laude

Admissions

  • Georgia, 1987
  • California, 2005
  • North Carolina, 2017

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