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When Can Landlord/Tenant Disputes Lead to Litigation?

 Posted on October 20, 2022 in Real Estate

Oakland Landlord/Tenant Dispute Lawyer

The laws that affect landlords and tenants can often be complex and confusing. There are many different rules and regulations that apply to both landlords and tenants, and it can be difficult to keep track of everything. Unfortunately, when disputes arise between landlords and tenants, they can sometimes end up in court. For landlords, it is important to be aware of the various ways in which a tenant dispute can lead to litigation. While some disputes can be resolved informally or through mediation, others may require more formal legal action, and real estate litigation may be required.

Common Disputes Between Landlords and Tenants

Depending on the nature of a dispute, a landlord may believe that a tenant has taken some actions that would cause them to experience financial harm, or a tenant may claim that a landlord has violated their rights in some way. Litigation may be necessary to address issues such as:

  • Breach of the lease agreement - If a tenant violates the terms of their lease, the landlord may take action to address this issue. For example, a tenant may have unauthorized occupants living in the unit, or they may violate restrictions on pets. In these cases, the landlord may seek to require the tenant to cease actions that are in violation of the lease, or they may attempt to evict the tenant.

  • Damage to the property - Intentional or accidental damage to property owned by the landlord can lead to litigation. If a tenant causes damage to the unit beyond normal wear and tear, they may be liable for repairs. In some cases, landlords may also sue for damages if they believe that the tenant has intentionally caused harm to the property. 

  • Failure to pay rent - A landlord may need to take legal action if a tenant fails to pay rent on time or in full. In some cases, a lease may provide a grace period during which rent may be paid, and if a tenant fails to make payments within this time period, they may be subject to eviction proceedings. In some cases, landlords may also sue for unpaid rent if they believe that the tenant has willfully withheld payment. 

  • Problems with the property - A landlord may need to defend against legal action by tenants related to failure to adequately address certain issues. This could include habitability issues such as failure to repair major plumbing or electrical problems or even more minor maintenance issues such as failure to fix leaky faucets or peeling paint. 

  • Discrimination - The Fair Housing Act prohibits landlords from discriminating against tenants on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, familial status, or disability. A landlord who is accused of discrimination will need to be able to demonstrate that they did not violate the Act. This can be a difficult burden to meet, and it is important for a landlord to be represented by an experienced attorney in these matters.

  • Retaliation - Federal and state laws prohibit landlords from retaliating against tenants who have exercised their legal rights. For example, if a tenant complains about a repair that needs to be made, the landlord cannot evict the tenant in retaliation for making the complaint. Landlords who are accused of retaliation or other types of wrongful eviction will need to be able to show that there was a valid reason for their actions, such as non-payment of rent. 

Contact Our Oakland Park Landlord/Tenant Dispute Lawyer

Landlord/tenant disputes can often be resolved informally through communication and negotiation between both parties. However, there are some situations when formal legal action may be necessary. Landlords will need to be aware of these potential situations so that they can take appropriate action to address any concerns that may arise, and they can secure representation from an attorney who is experienced in dispute resolution and litigation. To get legal help with these matters, contact our Plantation real estate litigation attorney at 754-332-2101 and set up a consultation today.


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