If I’m renting an apartment, what is my potential liability regarding a previous tenant’s activities?

UPDATED: Nov 2, 2014

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

UPDATED: Nov 2, 2014Fact Checked

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

If I’m renting an apartment, what is my potential liability regarding a previous tenant’s activities?

I moved into my current apartment about a month ago, and still receive the previous tenants’ mail (which I always take to the post office). A couple of days ago the postman tried to give me a package from one of the previous tenants, but after I refused saying that Im not the correct person, he informed me that he was a police officer and that the package contained an illegal substance. He then asked if I had ordered anything under the previous tenant’s name (I didn’t) and wanted to come inside and have a look around (which I refused). He left after I refused but I’m wondering if I should be worried.

Asked on November 2, 2014 under Criminal Law, Ohio

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Legally, you are not liable for another person's criminality if you did not in some way assist or participate in it. Practically, if there is evidence that you were involved--even if only as someone receiving and passing along, with knowledge that they are contraband, drugs, etc., packages--you could be charged. You need to make sure that you are *not* seen as participating in whatever the prior tenant did. You may wish to speak with the police and ask them if the prior tenant was involved in crime and also what can you do to not even in the smallest way get mixed up with what he/she was involved in.


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 lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption