(A) Notice of filing of charge. Upon the filing of written charge alleging an unlawful discriminatory housing practice:
(1) The commission shall serve notice upon the complainant acknowledging such filing and advising the complainant of the time limits and choice of forums provided under Chapter 4112. of the Revised Code.
(2) The commission shall promptly serve on the respondent a notice advising such respondent of the procedural rights and obligations of respondents under Chapter 4112. of the Revised Code together with a copy of the original charge.
(3) Each respondent may file an answer to such charge.
(B) Commencement of investigation. The investigation of any charge alleging an unlawful discriminatory housing practice shall commence not later than the thirtieth day after receipt of the charge.
(C) Time limitation for commission action. The commission shall make a final administrative disposition of a charge alleging an unlawful discriminatory housing practice within one year of the date of receipt of a charge, unless it is impracticable to do so. If the commission is unable to do so, it shall notify the complainant and respondent, in writing, of the reasons for not doing so. No complaint shall be valid unless issued within one year after the charge which results in the issuance of the complaint is filed.
(D) Publication of conciliation agreement. Each agreement for conciliation of any charge alleging an unlawful discriminatory housing practice under Chapter 4112. of the Revised Code shall be made public
Division (G) of section 4112.05 of the Revised Code authorizes punitive damages up to fifty thousand dollars when there is finding of unlawful discrimination in housing. The purpose of an award of punitive damages is to deter unlawful conduct in the future.
It is the policy of the commission that punitive damages are appropriate whenever a respondent engages in intentional discrimination. The amount of punitive damages to be awarded depends on the circumstances of each case. The commission will look at the nature of the respondent's conduct, the respondent's prior history of discrimination, respondent's size and profitability, respondent's cooperation or lack of cooperation during the investigation of the charge, and the effect respondent's actions had on the complainant.
The fact that an unlawful discriminatory act was committed by an agent, as opposed to a principal, shall not affect the amount of punitive damages.
As used in this rule, "housing accommodations for older persons" means:
(A) Housing provided under any state or federal program that is specifically designed and operated to assist elderly persons; or
(B) Housing intended for, and solely occupied by, persons sixty-two years of age or older; or
(C) Housing intended and operated for occupancy by at least one person fifty-five years of age or older per unit. The housing qualifies as housing for older persons under this paragraph, if it includes at least the following factors:
(1) The existence of significant facilities and services specifically designed to meet the physical or social needs of older persons, or if the provision of such facilities and services is not practicable, that such housing is necessary to provide important housing opportunities for older persons; and
(2) At least eighty percent of the units are occupied by at least one person fifty-five years of age or older per unit; and
(3) The publication of, and adherence to, policies and procedures which demonstrate an intent by the owner or manager to provide housing for persons fifty-five years of age or older.
(A) If a complaint is issued under section 4112.05 of the Revised Code alleging a violation of division (H) of section 4112.02 of the Revised Code, the complainant, respondent, or an aggrieved party may elect to have the claims in the complaint be decided in a civil action.
(B) Notice of the election must be made in a writing that is sent by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the commission, to the civil rights section of the office of the attorney general, and to the other parties to the pending administrative process within thirty days after receipt of the complaint by the electing party.
(C) The electing party must, upon receiving the mailing receipts which are returned to the electing party as the result of the certified mailings sent pursuant to paragraph (B) of this rule, send those receipts to the civil rights section of the attorney general's office.
(D) Upon receipt of a timely mailed election, the commission shall authorize the office of the attorney general to commence and maintain the civil action in the court of common pleas of the county in which the alleged unlawful discriminatory practices occurred.
(E) The office of the attorney general shall commence the civil action within thirty days after the receipt of the commission's authorization to commence the civil action.