Renter Rights: What to Know After an Accident on Rented Property

Renter Rights: What to Know After an Accident on Rented Property
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    If you are a renter, what rights would you have if an accident occurred on property that you are currently renting?

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Fortunately, the landlord should have a homeowners or landlord insurance policy that will cover your expenses if you are injured in an accident that takes place at a home or apartment complex unit that you are renting. 

You Have the Right to Take Legal Action Against the Landlord

Tenants may have the right to take legal action against a landlord who knew about, or should have known about potential injury risks on his or her property. A personal injury lawyer may be able to win your case at trial or negotiate a settlement before going to trial. 

Let’s say that a railing was loose and it fell on your foot as you were walking down the stairs. In that case, you can attempt to sue for medical bills and other costs related to treating your injury. If you are going to sue for medical bills or other damages, make sure to gather evidence such as photos of the scene, evidence that you told your landlord about the issue, and evidence that sought and received care that you had to pay for. 

You May Have the Right to Withhold Rent

In addition to taking your landlord to court for medical bills and other damages, you may be able to withhold rent until the situation is taken care of. If you were hurt by a loose railing or another damaged item in or on the property that you are currently leasing and the landlord does nothing to fix it, you may be able to stop paying rent until the issue is taken care of. Take a look at your contract to make sure this is within your rights.

It May Be Possible to Break the Lease

If you are forced to vacate your property because it is not safe to live in anymore, it may be possible to break the lease entirely. This means that you don’t have to pay rent to your landlord or have any other obligation to whoever owns the property. However, make sure that you review state law before assuming that you can break a lease without penalty.

If you have suffered an injury on property that you are leasing, you may have the right to sue for medical bills, stop paying rent, or break the lease entirely if the situation isn’t rectified. Those who have suffered an injury and want a lawyer may be able to consult with one for free to discuss their case.

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