Landlord Liability for Criminal Acts of Tenants

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What Liability Does a Landlord Have for Criminal Acts of His or Her Tenants?

In addition to being liable for the criminal acts of strangers/non-tenants, a landlord usually has a duty to protect the neighborhood of the rental property from the criminal acts of his/her tenants. Most often, landlords are held responsible for tenants dealing drugs on the property.

What Kinds of Penalties Do Landlords Face for Tenants Dealing Drugs?

If one of your tenants is dealing on the rental property, you as the landlord or rental property owner can face a variety of legal punishments. Criminal punishments usually require that you have knowledge of the drug dealing or other illegal activities. For example: 

What Can I Do to Prevent Being Held Responsible for the Criminal Acts Committed by My Tenants?

The best step you can take to reduce the likelihood of being held responsible for the criminal acts of your tenants is to perform a thorough screening of all applicants when renting out a property. Here are a few other tips: 

I'm Concerned About My Tenants, Do I Need a Lawyer?

Landlord-tenant law can become very complicated, and is constantly changing. If you have a concern about what duties you have to prevent criminal activity by your tenants, an experienced real estate attorney can help answer your questions and represent you in court if necessary.

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Last Modified: 10-07-2013 04:36 PM PDT

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