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justus2's avatar

Do I have a big lawsuit?

Asked by justus2 (851 points ) September 19th, 2009

In the apartments I am living in for about 2–3 months now at least there has been a huge water leak, the carpet is soaked from kitchen into the bedroom and mold growth all up in the closet nearest the kitchen. I heard tonight I could sue the place and get a lot of $$ because I do have pictures, and I can’t stand management here because she is a low liar and I would love to get her. So do I have a lawsuit if I was to sue them?

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30 Answers

Zen's avatar

Yup.

Carebearstare the fuckers.

justus2's avatar

How much would you say I could get from it?

Zen's avatar

Dunno. Am a non-professional carebear. Not a carebear, esq.

jrpowell's avatar

Did you inform them and they refused to fix it?

Judi's avatar

You need to give them the opportunity to fix it. In my apartments I have you sign an agreement to report water leaks immediately and if you don’t YOU are responsible for the damage. If you don’t get help from your manager ask to talk to their boss.
Usually lawsuits are to compensate for loss suffered. If you have not suffered any loss you probably won’t get anything.
I really don’t like people who try to get rich by filing frivolous law suits.
If your apartment is uninhabitable you may be able to get what ever it costs you to move.

Judi's avatar

I would start docmenting your attempts to get the repairs too.

YARNLADY's avatar

@Judi That’s the same thing we used to do. My dad was rental agent, and the agreement the tenants signed stated that they must notify us in writing about any leaks or anything that needed repair, or be responsible for the damage.

DarkScribe's avatar

Not a chance. if you have been aware of the problem for several months then they would regard it as contributory negligence for you not to have removed the pictures to a safe place until the problem was fixed. No big dollars, maybe enough to resolve the problem.

PandoraBoxx's avatar

Do you have renter’s insurance? This is a really good idea to have; it covers your possessions in case of fire, natural disaster, etc. You could sue for the replacement cost of your possessions. Whether that’s “lots of money” I don’t know. But you could recover based upon the current replacement value of what you own.

You would most likely have to move and break your lease. You would then have to sue your landlord to recover your deposit money, and for the damage to your possessions. You might want to check to see how landlord-tenant complaints are handled in your city. The black mold created from the moisture could pose a health risk.

jca's avatar

do you know how many people would be suing their landlord every time there was some problem with an apartment? this is not a way to get rich, believe you me. you say the carpet got wet – it’s probably their carpeting. put the problem in writing and inform the landlord. any apartment can have a problem – the issues is, when you tell them, do they fix it? is this the place you were considering moving to when you asked a few months ago about moving in your friend, a registered sex offender and not be on your lease? if i could post a link i would.

PandoraBoxx's avatar

@jca, are you referring to this question:
http://www.fluther.com/disc/50241/if-an-apartment-complex-finds-out-you-have-someone-living-with/ ?

Have you considered that your landlord is not responding because they would like you to vacate the premises?

jca's avatar

@PandoraBoxx : exactly. i am guessing there are landlord tenant issues here going way back. apartments don’t like when you try sneaky stuff like having people that don’t belong, especially if that person is a registered sex offender. doesn’t do much for the rep of the complex, or for the rest of the tenants when new tenants have undesirable guests that just decide to move in.

also, back to this question, she does not say how long the leak has been happening or what she has done to communicate to the LL, and what their responses have been. i love when people just talk “lawsuit” right off the bat . there are two sides to every story.

ASoprano's avatar

I got a decent birthday suit!

justus2's avatar

I have been on them for months and maintenance has seen it many times and says he will get someone to fix it and whoever is supposed to fix it never does. I have been calling the office and putting in maintenance orders for the water leak since I have moved here back in March

justus2's avatar

No I never moved to that apartment I was thinking about, this is the place I was still living in back when I asked that question. I found a place privately owned that is really nice, and the guy loves me and my fiance.

justus2's avatar

@judi, actually I didn’t even think about it until a friend told me he had a friend die after 3 months of being exposed to the mold spores I am in, and said I could get a lot out of them. He was in the business cleaning up this stuff or something for 25 years. So I was asking to see if he might be correct, and I cannot stand the manager here, she is a lying piece of crap who I would love to get back at and if I did I would say at the end, ” lie to people and they will try to get you ”. Be careful next time.

Supacase's avatar

Mold can be a consideration. My understanding is there are only a few kinds that are truly dangerous, but you could have allergies or sensitivities that are being aggravated and causing you health issues. Is any of your property damaged?

I think you can probably get compensation for damaged property, partial rent returned since your living conditions have not been what you are paying for, payment for overly high water bills in your name, and possibly some amount for your inconvenience and “suffering.”

Legitimate complaints have a place in our justice system. I don’t think much of suing for revenge, though. Suing for big bucks could bankrupt her and essentially ruin her life. Can you really dislike a landlord that much?

justus2's avatar

@Supacase She is a liar and due to her lies was forced to stay in a place I hate for an extra month than what my lease said, if nothing else I want karma to get her bad.

cwilbur's avatar

You’re unlikely to make noticeably more than you have paid to resolve the problem or than you have lost in possessions.

Lawsuits are not a way to be made rich. They are a way to be compensated for money and property that you have lost due to someone else’s mistake or inaction.

Darwin's avatar

Anyone can file a lawsuit over just about anything here in the US, so yes, you can sue the management and/or the owner of the apartments. You just have to hire a lawyer.

But the judge can still throw the suit out if he/she thinks it is frivolous, or the suit can go the other way if it turns out you didn’t dot every i and cross every t and do everything required of you by the lease.

In other words, even if you have a legitimate grievance you have to lay out money for the attorney with no clear guarantee that you will “win” a huge amount of money or even any money at all.

In fact, in most cases the only winners in a lawsuit are the attorneys.

tinyfaery's avatar

#1 You must have proof that you adhered to your part of the contract: you notified them by proper means and gave them a reasonable amount of time to fix it. Sounds like you did this.

#2 You must be able to prove that they did not fix it within a reasonable amount of time. Pictures and dated letters/requests/calls will help with this.

#3 Get a professional plumber to come inspect the damage and get their opinion as to what happened, and an estimate of what it would take to fix it. If belongings were damaged find out their replacement value.

#4 Dependent upon the state you live in, if the amount you are looking to recover is under a certain amount then you can file a case in small claims court. If it’s over a certain amount you can file a lawsuit in civil court, but that’s when larger fees become involved. Thing is, in small claims you can almost never recover the lawsuit expenses, in civil court it is much more likely, especially if you can prove negligence and/or fraud. You do not need an attorney per se, but you MUST look into the laws as they apply to you.

Good luck!

Supacase's avatar

Lifelong damage to her finances seems a little much for lying and making you live there one extra month. Karma works on its own. That said, I still think you have the absolute right to get what you are due.

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

well, in the US there is one lawyer for every 144 people. That is more lawyers than in all of the major European countries combined. And we wonder why people like to use the word ‘sue’ at the drop of a hat?

justus2's avatar

@Supacase That is the short of it, she is a lying piece of crap who screws over people all the time, she just screwed over a new neighbor by sucking her into signing a year lease when the lady only wanted to be here 6 months and had been told it was a 6 month lease, she gets whatever she can out of people and makes them stay here as long as she can! she deserves whatever she gets

PandoraBoxx's avatar

Okay, wait.
I found a place privately owned that is really nice, and the guy loves me and my fiance.

She is a liar and due to her lies was forced to stay in a place I hate for an extra month than what my lease said, if nothing else I want karma to get her bad.

When is your moving date?
Revenge will take time and money. Do you have an excess both? Do you need a hobby? Is she really worth the effort and attention you’re going to have to expend if you’re going to move?

justus2's avatar

Yes would be if I could get a few bucks from her, maybe she would learn to quit messing with all of her tenants, no one likes her. She just lied to a neighbor and told her it was a 6 month lease and she put her on a year lease….

Darwin's avatar

Has anyone where you live ever heard of reading things before they sign them?

justus2's avatar

@Darwin I am not sure how it happened, but I know that lady is a piece of dirt and needs to be stopped.

superjuicebox's avatar

you need damages for a lawsuit. fix your shit and get really sick from the mold, then you can sue the life out of them.

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