1. The Laws of New York
  2. Consolidated Laws
  3. General Business
  4. Article 26: Miscellaneous


Section 398-B Discrimination in car rentals prohibited

General Business (GBS)

1. No car or vehicle rental agency shall refuse to rent a car or vehicle to any person otherwise qualified because of race, color, ethnic origin, religion, disability, or sex.

  2. Any rental vehicle company found by a court of competent jurisdiction to have violated a provision of this section shall be subject to a penalty of not less than one thousand dollars nor more than twenty-five hundred dollars for each violation.

  3. (a) Whenever a rental vehicle company engages in a persistent or repeated business activity or conduct which discriminates against any individual based upon the individual's race, color, ethnic origin, religion, disability, or sex or membership in an otherwise protected class pursuant to federal law, the attorney general may apply, in the name of the people of the state of New York, to the supreme court of the state of New York, on five days notice, for an order enjoining the continuance of such business activity and directing restitution and damages. In any such proceeding, the attorney general may seek a civil penalty not to exceed five thousand dollars per violation and may recover costs pursuant to paragraph six of subdivision (a) of section eighty-three hundred three of the civil practice law and rules.

  (b) The term "persistent" as used in this subdivision shall include continuance or carrying on of any such business activity or conduct. The term "repeated" as used in this subdivision shall include repetition of any separate and distinct business activity or conduct which affect more than one person. The term "business activity" as used in this subdivision shall include policies and/or standard practices of the rental vehicle company.

  (c) In connection with any such application, the attorney general is authorized to take proof and make a determination of the relevant facts and to issue subpoenas in accordance with the civil practice law and rules. Such authorization shall not abate or terminate by reason of any action or proceeding brought by the attorney general under this section.