If my personal property has been damaged by lessor negligence, who is liable?

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If my personal property has been damaged by lessor negligence, who is liable?

My roof has been constantly leaking for 2 years. I have given notice every time and requested repair. Every time i was told he took care of it and the next time it rained, the same leaking occurred. Now it is starting to leak in new and different areas every time it rains.

Asked on June 22, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Michigan

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Anyone who damages another's property through negligence can be liable for that damage (e.g. the cost to repair or replace). If you have provided you landlord notice of the problem but it keeps recurring, his/her failure to effect some lasting repair, despite notice, would likely be considered negligence. Therefore, you may be able to hold him/her liable for the cost of any your personal property damaged by the leak(s), with one caveat: a plaintiff's ability to recover is reduced his/her own negligence. If you could have moved property out from under the leak but left it there, to be damaged, that could potentially reduce or even eliminate your ability to recover for that item.


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