Domestic Violence

A tenant who experiences domestic violence cannot be evicted as a result of that violence — it is strictly prohibited by federal law.

This page provides a quick overview of the Violence Against Women and Justice Department Reauthorization Act (VAWA), a federal law that applies to all Home Forward tenants, Section 8 participants, and Section 8 landlords.  In 2013, Congress reauthorized VAWA and greatly expanded HUD's authority to protect survivors of domestic and dating violence, stalking and sexual assault living in HUD-assisted housing.  For more details about this law, definitions of domestic violence, and the rights of victims of domestic violence, click on the links below:

Tenant information (English)
Tenant information (Spanish)
Tenant information (Russian)
Landlord information

Eligibility Protection

Home Forward may not deny assistance or admission to an applicant on the basis of the applicant’s current or past status as a victim of domestic violence, dating violence, stalking or sexual assault if the applicant otherwise qualifies for assistance or admission.

Protection from Eviction or Assistance Termination

Home Forward may not terminate assistance to a resident/participant in the Public Housing or Section 8 program on the basis of an incident or incidents of actual or threatened domestic violence, dating violence, stalking, or sexual assault against that participant.

Eviction of Perpetrators

Home Forward may terminate assistance to any individual who is a tenant or lawful occupant and who engages in criminal acts of physical violence against family members or others. This action may be taken without evicting, removing, terminating assistance to, or otherwise penalizing the victim of the violence who is also a tenant or lawful occupant.


An owner, property manager, or Home Forward may ask that an individual certify, using a HUD-approved certification form, that the individual is a victim of domestic violence, dating violence, stalking or seual assault, and that the incident in question is a true incident of actual or threatened abuse.  Click here to read or download the form.


All information provided to an owner, property manager, or Home Forward under this law must be retained in confidence, unless disclosure is requested or consented to by the individual in writing, or required for use in an eviction proceeding or termination of assistance, or otherwise required by applicable law.

Hot Lines

If you are experiencing domestic violence, you can call the confidential National Domestic Violence Hot Line:  1.800.799.SAFE (7233) or 1.800.787.3224 (TTY).  The services referral hot line for contact information for local victim advocacy groups or services providers is 211 or 503.222.5555.  The Portland Women's Crisis Line is 503-235-5333.