homelessness makes a new start
LAF's Dennericka Brooks takes on a landlord's devious schemes
Dawn was living a relatively normal life with her disabled husband and their children, the oldest of whom is a football player already being recruited by colleges and offered scholarships -- when everything fell apart. They had a Cook County Housing Choice Voucher and were all set to move into a new home in Oak Lawn, when her landlord told her, in remarks laced with racial slurs, that he was no longer willing to rent to her.
Threatened with homelessness, the family managed to move into the new home, but the landlord set about spreading rumors about Dawn and her children in the neighborhood and at the children’s school. Unbeknownst to Dawn, the landlord had never submitted his paperwork to the Housing Authority to receive the subsidy payment he was entitled to. After a few short months, the landlord filed an eviction against Dawn and her family for failing to pay the full market rent on the home. If they were evicted, they would be disqualified from the Housing Voucher program and have their voucher terminated. They would have lost the ability to purchase a home, under another special program for certain voucher holders.
Dennericka Brooks, DLA Piper, and LAF took the case. Dennericka got the eviction dismissed, and pro bono partners at DLA Piper helped Dawn and her family close on a new home under the special program. Now they are back to living happily -- just down the street from Dennericka!