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Kentucky Representative Proposes New “Protected Tenants” Law

Protected Tenants

FRANKFORT – New legislation introduced in the Kentucky House of Representatives would establish a new class of rental housing resident known as a “protected tenant,” as well as outline responsibilities of property owners and managers towards such tenants.

H.B. 41, sponsored by Rep. Joni Jenkins (D), defines a “protected tenant” as any current or potential resident who is protected by a valid domestic violence order, a pretrial release no contact order, or an interpersonal protective order. A property owner is prohibited from terminating, failing to renew, or refusing to enter into a lease with someone based on their status as a protected tenant. Further tenant protections include the right to new locks upon request (though they must reimburse the property owner), and the right to terminate a lease with a 30-day notice.

The property owner reserves the right to refuse a new key for any new locks to any individual named in a protective order, even if they are on the lease.

This bill follows an increased interest in expanding the rights and protections available to victims of domestic violence in rental housing. The sponsor has a history of involvement with various victim advocacy groups. H.B. 41 awaits consideration in the House Judiciary Committee.

Source: Kentucky General Assembly, National Apartment Association