If tenant has to evacuate because of wildfire threat, do I have to refund the rent for the evacuation period?

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If tenant has to evacuate because of wildfire threat, do I have to refund the rent for the evacuation period?

Evacuation ordered lasted for 12 days.
Ultimately no damage to premises.
Tenant returned after 12 days.

Asked on October 24, 2017 under Real Estate Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you do. You indicate there was an evacuation order: therefore, the tenant could not legally, though no fault of his or her own, occupy the premises for that time. When a tenant cannot have possession of the unit without it being due to tenant's fault or choice, they may not be charged rent for that period.


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