Minneapolis Public Housing Authority

No Company is Too Big to Play Fair.

On September 7, 2021, Nichols Kaster—together with John R. Shoemaker, Paul F. Shoemaker, and Larry McDonough—filed a class action challenging the egregious discriminatory practices that have forced public housing tenants in Minneapolis to endure hazardous and appalling housing conditions. The Complaint alleges that the City of Minneapolis discriminated on the basis “public assistance status” by failing to provide public housing tenants the inspection, licensing, maintenance, and related services that the City provides to tenants in privately-owned rental dwellings. Minneapolis Public Housing Authority and Community Housing Resources are also named defendants, with the lawsuit alleging that they breached the terms of their leases with tenants by failing to obtain licenses and inspections and respond to maintenance requests. The lawsuit goes on to assert consumer protection and housing law violations against all three defendants.

This is a civil rights class action, brought under the Minnesota Human Rights Act, and challenges the defendants’ illegal practices as endured by Plaintiff Kimberly Lowry and other similarly situated public housing tenants. Plaintiff, on behalf of herself and members of the proposed Classes, seeks monetary damages and injunctive relief.

This case is entitled Lowry v. City of Minneapolis, et. al., Court File No. 27-CV-21-10928 (Minnesota’s Fourth Judicial District Court)

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Q:How do I Join This Case?


    As part of our investigatory efforts, we are interested in speaking with people who have lived in Minneapolis public housing.

    You may contact us toll-free at (877) 344-4628, write to us at Nichols Kaster, PLLP, 4700 IDS Center, 80 South Eighth Street, Minneapolis, MN 55402, or email Attorney Nicole Schladt at nschladt@nka.com.

  • Q:Am I Eligible?


    This case seeks to represent tenants who have lived in Minneapolis public housing at any time over the last six years. If you have questions about whether you are included in these classes, contact us.

  • Q:What is a Class Action?


    In a class action lawsuit, one or more people, called the “class representatives,” sue on behalf of themselves and other people who have similar claims. Together, this group of people is called a “class” or “class members.” The class representative and the class members together are called the “Plaintiffs.” The entities or companies they sue are called the “Defendants.” The judge or jury resolves the claims for everyone in the class—except those who ask to be excluded from the lawsuit.

  • Q:How Long will This Take?


    Class actions can often take years. Please check this page periodically for updates on the case’s status.

  • Q:How Do I Learn More?


    For more information or questions regarding this case, please contact our Case Clerk, Haley Thompson, at hthompson@nka.com or call (612) 256-3268.

Case Updates

January 9, 2023

Plaintiffs’ Public Housing Claims Move Forward in Minneapolis

On January 3, 2023, Minnesota District Judge Patrick D. Robben ruled largely in favor of Plaintiffs Kimberly Lowry and Jeanne Harris when he denied, in part, a motion for judgment on the pleadings. Landlord Defendants Minneapolis Public Housing Authority (“MPHA”) and Community Housing Resources (“CHR”) brought the motion in Lowry v. City of Minneapolis, et. al, Case No. 27-CV-21-10928, filed in Minnesota’s Fourth Judicial District Court. While Judge Robben dismissed Plaintiffs’ Consumer Fraud Act and Deceptive Trade Practices Act claims, Plaintiffs’ claims under common law breach of contract, the Minneapolis Housing Maintenance Code, and the State Statutory Covenant of Habitability all survived and will proceed to discovery. Plaintiffs’ claims against the City of Minneapolis for denial of public services under the Minnesota Human Rights Act remain in the case as well.

Plaintiffs’ class action against MPHA, CHR, and the City of Minneapolis challenges alleged discrimination faced by public housing tenants due to their deteriorated and substandard housing conditions. The lawsuit alleges that the Defendants discriminated on the basis of “public assistance status” by failing to provide public housing tenants the City mandated inspection, licensing, and related public services that the City provides to tenants in privately-owned rental dwellings, and that the public housing defendants failed to provide City-licensed and inspected, code-compliant rental housing.

“This decision ensures that Minneapolis public housing tenants, currently living in dangerous and substandard conditions, are one step closer to their day in court,” said one of Plaintiffs’ attorneys, Nicole J. Schladt of Nichols Kaster, PLLP.

Plaintiffs are represented by Anna P. Prakash and Nicole J. Schladt of Nichols Kaster, PLLP; John R. Shoemaker and Paul F. Shoemaker of Shoemaker & Shoemaker, PLLC; and Larry McDonough.

July 27, 2022

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