Do we have a lawsuit against our apartment complex for possibly negligence on safely?

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Do we have a lawsuit against our apartment complex for possibly negligence on safely?

About 3 months ago someone tried to break into my apartment while my wife was home. I called my apartment complex while I was speeding home and left 2 voicemails and spoke with a girl in the office. We also sent an email after the police were called to the seen to inform the complex of the problem. About a month later we got a notice from the complex that their had been a break in at someone else’s apartment. About a week after receiving this notice my wife and I saw the man who tried to break into my apartment walking around our complex. We again notified the police department. Last night there was a fatal shooting last night at my aparment complex. My wife and I do not feel safe anymore. We want to try and break our lease but are worried about penalties.

Asked on July 26, 2012 under Real Estate Law, California

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

So really you wish to break the lease but you thought you could use the safety issue as a threat of lawsuit to do so, correct?  Every state has laws that require a landlord some legal responsibility to keep its renters safe.  I would bring your lease to an attorney to review, tell him or her the facts, and see if he or she will write you a letter asking to be let out of the lease.  In writing.  If the landlord does not comply then you may have to bring an action in court to have the lease rendered void, otherwise you may indeed be penalized.  Good luck.


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