If I bought ne furniture when I moved into my apartment 3 months ago and now I’m told there are bed bugs, who is responsible and what are my rights?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

If I bought ne furniture when I moved into my apartment 3 months ago and now I’m told there are bed bugs, who is responsible and what are my rights?

Asked on July 2, 2015 under Real Estate Law, Florida

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Possibly no one is responsible: the landlord *might* be responsible if you can show that they do not exterminate regularly or at reasonable intervals, and/or that they ignored (have not responded) to a known bedbug outbreak in the building of which they are provably aware. But if the landlord does take reasonable (not perfect--just reasonable) steps to avoid or deal with pest infestations, they are not responsible for those infestations that do happen--sometimes even clean tenants and clean buildings get pests (e.g. bedbugs) without it being anyone's fault and the law accepts that. You'd have to show landlord fault in some way to hold the building liable for your bedbugs (e.g. the cost to clean or replace furniture). This is in regards to holding them liable for any costs or losses you have incurred.

You are, however, on a forward-looking basis entitled to have the landlord deal with the current problem within a reasonable amount of time after you notify them of it. If they do not take steps to deal with the current infestation--and again, within a "reasonable" time frame, which could be days or even a week, week-and-half if they try to get an exterminator but the exterminator is booked up--then you may be entitled to withhold rent until the problem is addressed.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption