According to a report in USA Today, the number of complaints filed under the Federal Fair Housing Act by consumers on housing related issues increased 41% in 2007 over figures in 2000, while the number of cases investigated and prosecuted declined by 62% during the same time period.
The number of housing related complaints filed increased from 7,100 filed in 1999 and 2000 to over 10,000 in 2006 and 2007. HUD filed 36 discrimination charges in 2006 and 31 in 2007 which was a dramatic decrease from 111 in 1999 and 82 in 2000. Since the start of 2008, only a dozen discrimination charges have been filed, and just two cases have been referred to the Justice Department.
While the number of cases settled out of court by HUD rose to 948 in 2007 from 778 in 1999, last year’s settlements totaled 36.5 percent of all investigated cases compared to 42 percent in 1999. Of the 2,595 cases investigated in 2007, nearly 67 percent were dismissed due to insufficient evidence or the inability to locate the alleged victim, among other reasons.