What legal action can I take of I was renting a shop for saloon and the building was damaged by fire but the land lord lord does not have insurance?

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What legal action can I take of I was renting a shop for saloon and the building was damaged by fire but the land lord lord does not have insurance?

Nor is he willing to compensate us.

Asked on October 12, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Massachusetts

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

The landlord does not need to compensate you, unless the landlord was at fault in causing the fire (i.e. the fire occured beause of the landlord's carelessness or negligence). You could sue whomever was responsible--that is, anyone whose careless or deliberate bad act caused the fire--though there often is no one at fault (for example, fire caused by lightning) or no one you can identify (for example, someone was careless with a cigarrette--but don't know who).

If the premises is partially or totally uninhabitable or unusable, you would be entitled either to a rent reduction until it's repaired or to terminate the lease early without penalty: if a landlord cannot provide you the usuable space he/she/it agreed to provide, you, as the tenant, are entitled to compensation (the rent reduction) or to treat the lease as terminated. If you want to explore these options, you should meet with a landlord-tenant attorney.

 


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