Can I sue myreal estateagent and/or their agency for negligence which resulted in damage to my property?

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Can I sue myreal estateagent and/or their agency for negligence which resulted in damage to my property?

While on vacation, she had an open house (no one showed) and shut the closet doors where my 16 year old cat’s litter boxes were. My cat was forced to go the the bathroom on a bedroom carpet for 8 days. She only used this 1 room so it’s the only carpet that needs replacement. The agent knew about the cat – the boxes were large and not obscured by anything. She has refused responsibility and payment. She terminated our contract, which we would have done anyway after receiving payment. She told us to go ahead and sue he because she was not responsible. What recourse do we have? The new carpet will cost $675

Asked on March 25, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Maine

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If someone causes damage to another's property though being unreasonably careless--or "negligent," as the law puts it--that person is liegally responsible, or liable, for the damages. If the realtor knew or reasonably should have known (e.g. any reasonable person would have known) about the cat and realized the issue with the litterbox, then you may be liable. (This is a question fo fact which a court would decide if you sue.) Based on the amount at stake, it may well make sense to bring an action in small claims court, where you do not need an attorney and you can represent yourself--all you'd be risking is the filing fee (usually $30 - $50, though check first) and your time. Good luck.


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