The Fair Housing Council sent testers to Orchard Estates to uncover evidence of possible discrimination. According to the Charge of Discrimination issued by HUD, one female tester was denied an apartment because she said that her husband's daught er might visit on weekends. It was also alleged that Footman, a Black, female tester, was treated less favorably than two other white, female testers. Finally, HUD investigators found, Orchard Estates was segregated into thirds. One section of the comp lex was predominately white, one section was predominately African-American, and one section was mostly filled with families with children.
After the HUD Charge was issued, FHC and Footman, represented by Ronald Van Norstrand of Legal Services of Central New York, intervened as parties in the case. Soon after the intervention by FHC and Footman, Orchard Estates decided to settle with out the need for a full hearing before Judge Heifitz.