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Florida lawmakers propose jail time for emotional support animal fraud

The bill would also prohibit landlords from discriminating against people who really need one.
Credit: AP
(AP Photo/Julio Cortez, File)

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — We've all seen the stories of people trying to bring unique creatures for emotional support on airplanes. No, ma'am, you can't bring your peacock on board.

But people who truly need the comfort of a calm, loving pet often face a bigger struggle at home – finding a place to live.

The Florida Senate passed a bill Tuesday that would forbid landlords from discriminating against people who require emotional support animals, but allows them to request proof of a person's disability if it isn't obvious.

It also targets people who pretend to need one.

People are "getting phony baloney psychological papers saying they're allowed to have animals in their communities," Sen. Kevin Rader (D-29th District) said. “You can go online right now and for … less than $100 get a certificate for an emotional support animal,” 

If Senate Bill 1084 becomes law, anyone who falsifies information or misrepresents their need for a support animal can spend up to 60 days in jail, according to the Associated Press.

Credit: AP
(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File)

RELATED: Artist and her emotional support peacock were denied entry on flight

RELATED: Delta allowed an emotional support pit bull on a flight to Phoenix, but not on the return trip. Why?

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