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1988 Minnesota Session Laws

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                         Laws of Minnesota 1988 

                        CHAPTER 660-S.F.No. 1769 
           An act relating to human rights; clarifying marital 
          status discrimination and housing discrimination; 
          enforcing affirmative action requirements; making 
          procedural and administrative changes; amending 
          Minnesota Statutes 1986, sections 363.01, by adding a 
          subdivision; 363.02, subdivision 2a, and by adding a 
          subdivision; 363.03, subdivision 2; 363.06, 
          subdivision 3; 363.073, subdivisions 1 and 3; 363.091; 
          363.121; and 363.14, subdivisions 1 and 3; Minnesota 
          Statutes 1987 Supplement, sections 363.06, subdivision 
          1; and 363.071, subdivision 2; proposing coding for 
          new law in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 363. 
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
    Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 363.01, is 
amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
    Subd. 40.  [MARITAL STATUS.] "Marital status" means whether 
a person is single, married, remarried, divorced, separated, or 
a surviving spouse and, in employment cases, includes protection 
against discrimination on the basis of the identity, situation, 
actions, or beliefs of a spouse or former spouse. 
    Sec. 2.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 363.02, 
subdivision 2a, is amended to read:  
    Subd. 2a.  [MANUFACTURED HOME PARKS.] The provisions of 
subdivision 2, prohibiting discrimination because of familial 
status:  
    (1) do not apply to a manufactured home park the majority 
of whose lots are reserved by park rule to households containing 
at least one elderly person; and 
    (2) do not apply to a section or sections of a manufactured 
home park which are identified by park rule and do not comprise 
more than one-third of the lots in the park.  In order to 
qualify for exemption under this subdivision does not allow, a 
park owner to avoid complying must comply with section 327C.02, 
subdivision 2, 327C.05 or 327C.07, subdivision 4 when adopting 
or amending a rule concerning the permitted familial status of 
residents or of buyers of homes offered for in park sale.  
    Sec. 3.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 363.02, is 
amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
    Subd. 2b.  [EVICTION DUE TO FAMILIAL STATUS.] The 
provisions of section 363.03, subdivision 2, prohibiting 
discrimination because of familial status, do not apply to 
eviction from, or denial of continuing tenancy in, dwelling 
units exempt through certification under this section, provided 
that (1) one year has elapsed from the commencement of the 
familial status and (2) six months prior written notice has been 
given to the tenant, unless the eviction or denial of continuing 
tenancy is for nonpayment of rent, damage to the premises, 
disturbance of other tenants, or other breach of the lease. 
    Sec. 4.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 363.03, 
subdivision 2, is amended to read:  
    Subd. 2.  [REAL PROPERTY.] It is an unfair discriminatory 
practice: 
    (1) For an owner, lessee, sublessee, assignee, or managing 
agent of, or other person having the right to sell, rent or 
lease any real property, or any agent of any of these:  
    (a) to refuse to sell, rent, or lease or otherwise deny to 
or withhold from any person or group of persons any real 
property because of race, color, creed, religion, national 
origin, sex, marital status, status with regard to public 
assistance, disability, or familial status; or 
    (b) to discriminate against any person or group of persons 
because of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, 
marital status, status with regard to public assistance, 
disability, or familial status in the terms, conditions or 
privileges of the sale, rental or lease of any real property or 
in the furnishing of facilities or services in connection 
therewith, except that nothing in this clause shall be construed 
to prohibit the adoption of reasonable rules intended to protect 
the safety of minors in their use of the real property or any 
facilities or services furnished in connection therewith; or 
             (c) in any transaction involving real property, to print, 
circulate or post or cause to be printed, circulated, or posted 
any advertisement or sign, or use any form of application for 
the purchase, rental or lease of real property, or make any 
record or inquiry in connection with the prospective purchase, 
rental, or lease of real property which expresses, directly or 
indirectly, any limitation, specification, or discrimination as 
to race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, marital 
status, status with regard to public assistance, disability, or 
familial status, or any intent to make any such limitation, 
specification, or discrimination except that nothing in this 
clause shall be construed to prohibit the advertisement of a 
dwelling unit as available to adults-only if the person placing 
the advertisement reasonably believes that the provisions of 
this subdivision prohibiting discrimination because of familial 
status do not apply to the dwelling unit.  
             (2) For a real estate broker, real estate salesperson, or 
employee, or agent thereof:  
             (a) to refuse to sell, rent, or lease or to offer for 
sale, rental, or lease any real property to any person or group 
of persons or to negotiate for the sale, rental, or lease of any 
real property to any person or group of persons because of race, 
color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, marital status, 
status with regard to public assistance, disability, or familial 
status or represent that real property is not available for 
inspection, sale, rental, or lease when in fact it is so 
available, or otherwise deny or withhold any real property or 
any facilities of real property to or from any person or group 
of persons because of race, color, creed, religion, national 
origin, sex, marital status, status with regard to public 
assistance, disability, or familial status; or 
             (b) to discriminate against any person because of race, 
color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, marital status, 
status with regard to public assistance, disability, or familial 
status in the terms, conditions or privileges of the sale, 
rental or lease of real property or in the furnishing of 
facilities or services in connection therewith; or 
             (c) to print, circulate, or post or cause to be printed, 
circulated, or posted any advertisement or sign, or use any form 
of application for the purchase, rental, or lease of any real 
property or make any record or inquiry in connection with the 
prospective purchase, rental or lease of any real property, 
which expresses directly or indirectly, any limitation, 
specification or discrimination as to race, color, creed, 
religion, national origin, sex, marital status, status with 
regard to public assistance, disability, or familial status or 
any intent to make any such limitation, specification or 
discrimination except that nothing in this clause shall be 
construed to prohibit the advertisement of a dwelling unit as 
available to adults-only if the person placing the advertisement 
reasonably believes that the provisions of this subdivision 
prohibiting discrimination because of familial status do not 
apply to the dwelling unit.  
             (3) For a person, bank, banking organization, mortgage 
company, insurance company, or other financial institution or 
lender to whom application is made for financial assistance for 
the purchase, lease, acquisition, construction, rehabilitation, 
repair or maintenance of any real property or any agent or 
employee thereof:  
             (a) to discriminate against any person or group of persons 
because of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, 
marital status, status with regard to public assistance, 
disability, or familial status of the person or group of persons 
or of the prospective occupants or tenants of the real property 
in the granting, withholding, extending, modifying or renewing, 
or in the rates, terms, conditions, or privileges of the 
financial assistance or in the extension of services in 
connection therewith; or 
             (b) to use any form of application for the financial 
assistance or make any record or inquiry in connection with 
applications for the financial assistance which expresses, 
directly or indirectly, any limitation, specification, or 
discrimination as to race, color, creed, religion, national 
origin, sex, marital status, status with regard to public 
assistance, disability, or familial status or any intent to make 
any such limitation, specification, or discrimination; or 
             (c) to discriminate against any person or group of persons 
who desire to purchase, lease, acquire, construct, rehabilitate, 
repair or maintain real property in a specific urban or rural 
area or any part thereof solely because of the social, economic 
or environmental conditions of the area in the granting, 
withholding, extending, modifying, or renewing, or in the rates, 
terms, conditions, or privileges of the financial assistance or 
in the extension of services in connection therewith. 
             (4) For any real estate broker or real estate salesperson, 
for the purpose of inducing a real property transaction from 
which the person, the person's firm, or any of its members may 
benefit financially, to represent that a change has occurred or 
will or may occur in the composition with respect to race, 
creed, color, national origin, sex, marital status, status with 
regard to public assistance, or disability of the owners or 
occupants in the block, neighborhood, or area in which the real 
property is located, and to represent, directly or indirectly, 
that this change will or may result in undesirable consequences 
in the block, neighborhood, or area in which the real property 
is located, including but not limited to the lowering of 
property values, an increase in criminal or antisocial behavior, 
or a decline in the quality of schools or other public 
facilities. 
    (5) For a person to deny a totally or partially blind, 
physically handicapped, or deaf person with a service dog full 
and equal access to real property provided for in this section.  
The person may not be required to pay extra compensation for the 
service dog but is liable for damage done to the premises by the 
service dog.  
    (5) Notwithstanding the provisions of any law, ordinance, 
or home rule charter to the contrary, no person shall be deemed 
to have committed an unfair discriminatory practice based upon 
age if the unfair discriminatory practice alleged is attempted 
or accomplished for the purpose of obtaining or maintaining one 
of the exemptions provided for a dwelling unit provided for in 
section 363.02, subdivision 2. 
    Sec. 5.  Minnesota Statutes 1987 Supplement, section 
363.06, subdivision 1, is amended to read:  
    Subdivision 1.  [ACTIONS.] Any person aggrieved by a 
violation of this chapter may bring a civil action as provided 
in section 363.14, subdivision 1, clause (a), or may file a 
verified charge with the commissioner or the commissioner's 
designated agent.  A charge filed with the commissioner must be 
in writing on a form provided by the commissioner and signed by 
the charging party.  The charge must state the name of the 
person alleged to have committed an unfair discriminatory 
practice, and set out a summary of the details of the practice 
complained of.  The commissioner may require a charging party to 
provide the address of the person alleged to have committed the 
unfair discriminatory practice, names of witnesses, documents, 
and any other information necessary to process the charge.  The 
commissioner may dismiss a charge when the charging party fails 
to provide required information.  The commissioner within ten 
days of the filing shall serve a copy of the charge and a form 
for use in responding to the charge upon the respondent 
personally or by mail.  The respondent shall file with the 
department a written response to the charge within 20 days of 
receipt of the charge.  If the respondent fails to respond 
within 30 days after service of the charge, and service was 
consistent with rule 4 of the rules of civil procedure, the 
commissioner, on behalf of the complaining party, may bring an 
action for default in district court pursuant to rule 55.01 of 
the rules of civil procedure. 
    Sec. 6.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 363.06, 
subdivision 3, is amended to read:  
    Subd. 3.  [TIME FOR FILING CLAIM.] A claim of an unfair 
discriminatory practice must be brought as a civil action 
pursuant to section 363.14, subdivision 1, clause (a), filed in 
a charge with a local commission pursuant to section 363.116, or 
filed in a charge with the commissioner within 300 days one year 
after the occurrence of the practice.  The running of the 300 
day one-year limitation period is suspended during the time a 
potential charging party and respondent are voluntarily engaged 
in a dispute resolution process involving a claim of unlawful 
discrimination under chapter 363, including arbitration, 
conciliation, mediation or grievance procedures pursuant to a 
collective bargaining agreement or statutory, charter, or 
ordinance provisions for a civil service or other employment 
system.  A potential respondent who participates in such a 
process with a potential charging party before a charge is filed 
or a civil action is brought shall notify the department and the 
charging party in writing of the participation in the process 
and the date the process commenced, and shall also notify the 
department and the charging party of the ending date of the 
process.  A respondent who fails to provide this notification is 
barred from raising the defense that the statute of limitations 
has run unless the 300 days one year plus a period of time equal 
to the suspension period has passed.  
    Sec. 7.  Minnesota Statutes 1987 Supplement, section 
363.071, subdivision 2, is amended to read:  
    Subd. 2.  [DETERMINATION OF DISCRIMINATORY PRACTICE.] The 
administrative law judge shall make findings of fact and 
conclusions of law, and if the administrative law judge finds 
that the respondent has engaged in an unfair discriminatory 
practice, the administrative law judge shall issue an order 
directing the respondent to cease and desist from the unfair 
discriminatory practice found to exist and to take such 
affirmative action as in the judgment of the administrative law 
judge will effectuate the purposes of this chapter.  The order 
shall be a final decision of the department.  The administrative 
law judge shall order any respondent found to be in violation of 
any provision of section 363.03 to pay a civil penalty to the 
state.  This penalty is in addition to compensatory and punitive 
damages to be paid to an aggrieved party.  The administrative 
law judge shall determine the amount of the civil penalty to be 
paid, taking into account the seriousness and extent of the 
violation, the public harm occasioned by the violation, whether 
the violation was intentional, and the financial resources of 
the respondent.  Any penalties imposed under this provision 
shall be paid into the general fund of the state.  In all cases 
where the administrative law judge finds that the respondent has 
engaged in an unfair discriminatory practice the administrative 
law judge shall order the respondent to pay an aggrieved party, 
who has suffered discrimination, compensatory damages in an 
amount up to three times the actual damages sustained.  In all 
cases, the administrative law judge may also order the 
respondent to pay an aggrieved party, who has suffered 
discrimination, damages for mental anguish or suffering and 
reasonable attorney's fees, in addition to punitive damages in 
an amount not more than $6,000 $8,500.  Punitive damages shall 
be awarded pursuant to section 549.20.  In any case where a 
political subdivision is a respondent the total of punitive 
damages awarded an aggrieved party may not exceed $6,000 $8,500 
and in that case if there are two or more respondents the 
punitive damages may be apportioned among them.  Punitive 
damages may only be assessed against a political subdivision in 
its capacity as a corporate entity and no regular or ex officio 
member of a governing body of a political subdivision shall be 
personally liable for payment of punitive damages pursuant to 
this subdivision.  In addition to the aforesaid remedies, in a 
case involving discrimination in 
    (a) employment, the administrative law judge may order the 
hiring, reinstatement or upgrading of an aggrieved party, who 
has suffered discrimination, with or without back pay, admission 
or restoration to membership in a labor organization, or 
admission to or participation in an apprenticeship training 
program, on-the-job training program, or other retraining 
program, or any other relief the administrative law judge deems 
just and equitable. 
    (b) housing, the administrative law judge may order the 
sale, lease, or rental of the housing accommodation or other 
real property to an aggrieved party, who has suffered 
discrimination, or the sale, lease or rental of a like 
accommodation or other real property owned by or under the 
control of the person against whom the complaint was filed, 
according to terms as listed with a real estate broker, or if no 
such listing has been made, as otherwise advertised or offered 
by the vendor or lessor, or any other relief the administrative 
law judge deems just and equitable. 
    The administrative law judge shall cause the findings of 
fact, conclusions of law, and order to be served on the 
respondent personally, on the charging party by registered or 
certified mail, and shall furnish copies to the attorney general 
and the commissioner. 
    Sec. 8.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 363.073, 
subdivision 1, is amended to read:  
    Subdivision 1.  [SCOPE OF APPLICATION.] No department or 
agency of the state shall receive, enter into, or accept any bid 
or proposal for a contract or nor execute any contract for goods 
or, services, or the performance of any function, or any 
agreement to transfer funds for any reason in excess of $50,000 
with any business person having more than 20 full-time employees 
in Minnesota at any time during the previous 12 months, unless 
the firm or business person has an affirmative action plan for 
the employment of minority persons, women, and the disabled that 
has been approved by the commissioner of human rights.  Receipt 
of a certificate of compliance issued by the commissioner shall 
signify that a firm or business person has an affirmative action 
plan that has been approved by the commissioner.  A certificate 
shall be valid for a period of two years.  
    Sec. 9.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 363.073, 
subdivision 3, is amended to read:  
    Subd. 3.  [REVOCATION OF CONTRACT.] A contract awarded by a 
department or agency of the state may be terminated or abridged 
by the department or agency because of suspension or revocation 
of a certificate based upon a contractor's failure to implement 
or make a good faith effort to implement an affirmative action 
plan approved by the commissioner under this section.  If a 
contract is awarded to a person who does not have a contract 
compliance certificate required under subdivision 1, the 
commissioner may void the contract on behalf of the state. 
    Sec. 10.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 363.091, is 
amended to read:  
    363.091 [ENFORCEMENT.] 
    When a respondent fails or refuses to comply with a final 
decision of the department, the commissioner may file with the 
court administrator of district court in the judicial district 
in which the hearing was held a petition requesting the court to 
order the respondent to comply with the order of the department. 
Thereupon the court shall issue an order to show cause directed 
to the respondent why an order directing compliance should not 
be issued.  Notwithstanding the provisions of any law or rule of 
civil procedure to the contrary, the court shall examine at the 
hearing on the order to show cause all the evidence in the 
record and may amend the order of the department in any way the 
court deems just and equitable.  If the panel or examiner has 
ordered an award of damages pursuant to section 363.071 and if 
the court sustains or modifies the award, it the court shall 
enter judgment on the order or modified order in the same manner 
as in the case of an order of the district court, as provided in 
section 546.27.  
    Sec. 11.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 363.121, is 
amended to read:  
    363.121 [DEPARTMENT ATTORNEY.] 
    The attorney general shall be the attorney for the 
department.  When a matter has been referred to the attorney 
general by the commissioner after a finding of probable cause or 
for the purpose of interim relief, communications between 
members of the attorney general's office and charging parties or 
members of a class formed pursuant to section 363.06, 
subdivision 4, clause (6), are privileged as would be a 
communication between an attorney and a client. 
    Sec. 12.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 363.14, 
subdivision 1, is amended to read:  
    Subdivision 1.  [COURT ACTIONS, SUITS BY PRIVATE PARTIES, 
INTERVENTION.] (a) The commissioner or a person may bring a 
civil action seeking redress for an unfair discriminatory 
practice directly to district court.  In addition, a person may 
bring a civil action: 
    (a) Directly to district court; or 
    (b) Notwithstanding the provisions of any law to the 
contrary, 
    (1) within 45 days after the commissioner has dismissed a 
charge because it is frivolous or without merit, because the 
charging party has failed to provide required information, 
because the commissioner has determined that further use of 
department resources is not warranted, or because the 
commissioner has determined that there is no probable cause to 
credit the allegations contained in a charge filed with the 
commissioner; 
    (2) within 45 days after the commissioner has reaffirmed a 
determination of no probable cause if the charging party 
requested a reconsideration of the probable cause determination; 
or 
    (3) after 45 days from the filing of a charge pursuant to 
section 363.06, subdivision 1 if a hearing has not been held 
pursuant to section 363.071 or if the commissioner has not 
entered into a conciliation agreement to which the charging 
party is a signator.  The charging party shall notify the 
commissioner of an intention to bring a civil action, which 
shall be commenced within 90 days of giving the notice;. 
    (b) If the commissioner has issued both probable cause and 
no probable cause determinations on separate issues in the same 
charge, the charging party may, if a hearing is held, require 
that all matters be heard at the hearing or may bring a civil 
action for the no probable cause charges at the same time as the 
probable cause charges under the rules and time frames that 
govern the probable cause charges. 
    (c) The commissioner may dismiss, without prejudice to the 
charging party, any case filed with the department on or before 
June 30, 1978.  The commissioner shall notify a charging party 
by regular mail sent before August 1, 1981, of the right to 
bring a civil action pursuant to this section.  Upon giving this 
notice the commissioner shall end all proceedings in the 
department relating to the charge.  Notwithstanding any 
statutory period of limitation to the contrary, an individual 
notified pursuant to this clause may bring a civil action 
relating to the charge; provided that the action is filed on or 
before February 1, 1982. 
    A charging party bringing a civil action shall mail by 
registered or certified mail a copy of the summons and complaint 
to the commissioner, and upon their receipt the commissioner 
shall terminate all proceedings in the department relating to 
the charge.  No charge shall be filed or reinstituted with the 
commissioner after a civil action relating to the same unfair 
discriminatory practice has been brought unless the civil action 
has been dismissed without prejudice. 
    (d) Upon application by the complaining party to the 
district court at a special term and under circumstances the 
court deems just, the court may appoint an attorney for the 
person and may authorize the commencement of the action without 
payment of fees, costs, or security. 
    (e) Upon timely application, the court may permit the 
department to intervene in a civil action brought pursuant to 
this section upon certification that the case is of general 
public importance. 
    Sec. 13.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 363.14, 
subdivision 3, is amended to read:  
    Subd. 3.  [ATTORNEY'S FEES AND COSTS.] In any action or 
proceeding brought pursuant to this section the court, in its 
discretion, may allow the prevailing party, other than the 
department, a reasonable attorney's fee as part of the costs. 
    Sec. 14.  [363.15] [NOTICE OF APPEAL TO THE COMMISSIONER.] 
    In any case that is appealed to the supreme court or the 
court of appeals in which an issue is raised under this chapter, 
the party raising the issue shall serve a copy of the notice of 
appeal on the commissioner.  The clerk of the appellate courts 
may not accept a notice of appeal or other papers, documents, or 
briefs from any party in an action involving this chapter 
without proof of service of the papers, documents, or briefs 
upon the commissioner. 
    Approved April 26, 1988

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