Can a property management company restrict freedom of speech by including an addendum that states that clients may not post negative or disparaging reviews on social media sites?

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Can a property management company restrict freedom of speech by including an addendum that states that clients may not post negative or disparaging reviews on social media sites?

I feel that it’s in violation because I never made any untruthful remarks.

Asked on June 16, 2015 under Real Estate Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

It is legal; a landlord (or an employer, for that matter) can restrict freedom of speech at will, since "freedom of speech" as a right only applies to the government: that is, the government is forbidden from restricting speech, but private entities are allowed to. However, a lease addendum cannot be added in the middle of a lease term, but only when a lease begins or renews. So the landlord is allowed to do this, but may not be able to do it right now. If you don't want to live with such a restriction, your recourse is to move out and live elsewhere.


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