Limited English Proficiency

Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) provided with U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) funds need to comply with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination based on the ground of race, color or national origin by any entity receiving federal financial assistance. Administrative methods or procedures, which have the effect of subjecting individuals to discrimination or defeating the objectives of these regulations, are prohibited.

Entities that are recipients of federal financial assistance must develop a plan for persons of different national origins that cannot speak or read English (limited English proficiency- LEP) to ensure that they have meaningful access to all portions of their program or activity, not just those portions that receive HUD funds.


Every grantee needs to adopt a Language Access Plan (LAP). A recommended template is provided below by the Office of Community Investment (CI).  

Please note that there is no prior approval of the above documents by Compliance Staff before the local government adopts the plan. However, if technical assistance is needed, please email

Language Access Plan  8/2012- Effective for 2012 Grantees

In addition, all public notices need to have a LEP phrase for the public to request translation or interpretation services concerning the information in the notice.

LEP Phrase for Public Notices 

Required Posters for Grantees

LEP Interpreter Poster
Language Identification Flashcards, U.S. Department of Commerce, Census Bureau 
LEP Services Poster- English/Spanish 




Grantees need to conduct a four factor analysis, including:

• The number or proportion of LEP individuals served or encountered in the eligible service population.
• The frequency with which LEP individuals come in contact with your program, activity or service.
• The nature and importance of the program, activity, or service.
• Available resources and cost

Examples of applying the four-factor analysis to HUD-specific programs are located in Appendix A of the LEP Final Guidance found in the HUD Federal Register dated January 22, 2007

A supplemental technical assistance guide for grantee compliance with Title VI is now available.    

CI Title VI Technical Assistance Handbook 8/2012
CI LAP Annual Report  
CI Monitoring Checklists 
HUD Community Development Planning (CPD) Monitoring Handbook
HUD Federal Register Vol 72, No 13, 2007 pp. 2732 – 2754 
Executive Order 13166  
HUD Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity 
HUD LEP Translated Materials  
LEP Federal Interagency Website 
NC Department of Health and Human Services LEP 
U.S. Department of Transportation LEP 
U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Executive Order 13166 FAQ’s 
U.S. DOJ Common Language Access Questions, Technical Assistance, and Guidance for Federally Conducted and Assisted Programs
U.S. Attorney General Memorandum to Federal Agencies: Renewed Commitment to Language Access Obligations Under Executive Order 13166, February 2011

The table below sets forth HUD ‘‘safe harbors’’ for written translations:


 Size of Language Group

 Recommended Provision of Written Language Assistance

1,000 or more in the eligible population in the market area or among current beneficiaries Translated vital documents  
More than 5% of the eligible population or beneficiaries and more than 50 in number   Translated vital documents
More than 5% of the eligible population or beneficiaries and 50 or less in number   Translated written notice of right to receive free oral interpretation of documents
5% or less of the eligible population or beneficiaries and less than 1,000 in number No written translation is required


Remember, there is NO safe harbor for oral interpretation. Reasonable availability is expected based on the four factor analysis.

Discrimination Complaints

To file a housing discrimination under Title VI with CI, please complete CI's complaint form - English/Spanish
CI Title VI Complaint Procedure -  English/Spanish

Visit the NC Human Relations Commission to file a discrimination complaint
Visit HUD's website to file a discrimination complaint 
Visit the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division to file a discrimination complaint

Tools and Translation Resources

Sample Individual Language Assistance Services Case Record 
Sample Department Language Assistance Provision Quarterly Report 
Language Services Agreement for LEP Customer – English/Spanish 
Federal Protections Against National Origin Discrimination Brochure, U.S. Department of Justice 
U.S. Department of Justice Publications 
LEP Multilingual Materials 
NC Agencies Working with the Hispanic Population  
Carolina Association of Translators and Interpreters  

Visit our Training and Workshops page for various presentations and workshops. For grantees needing technical assistance on any of the templates or forms, it is recommended to submit electronic versions to



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