What can I do to prepare for court against my landlord?

My landlord knew about the mold issue that I have for a month or so didn’t show signs of wanting to take care of the issue until I didn’t hand her the rent. Her workers are not licenesed to handle mold issue and she wanted her workers to look at the problem, I told her I needed a 24 hr noticed and she replied, “F… you”. I told my landlord to take me to court. When I moved in this place wasen’t lead inspected will that help me also.

Asked on June 7, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Maryland

Answers:

Rebecca Coleman

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Maryland law requires a landlord to repair and eliminate conditions which constitute, or if not promptly corrected will constitute, a fire hazard or a serious and substantial threat to life, health, or safety of the occupants. If the landlord fails to make the repair, you have the right to pay your rent into an escrow account with the district court, but you cannot just stop paying all together. There are very specific procedures you must follow, and you must give the landlord notice and time to make repairs. You must also file a "Petition of Action in Rent Escrow" form with the court (available on the district court's website). The court will then decide if the situation warrants creating an escrow account until the problem is fixed. You can and should do this before your landlord takes you to court to evict you.

As to the lead inspection, under Maryland law, your landlord should not be able to file an eviction action unless she has a current lead inspection certificate, but as long as she gets the certificate (even if it is after you move in) she will be able to file for eviction.


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