Is it legal for a property manager to video inside an apartment during an inspection visit without a tenant’s consent or presence?

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Is it legal for a property manager to video inside an apartment during an inspection visit without a tenant’s consent or presence?

I was sent a 48 hour notice for a routine inspection from the property management, which I had received in the mail only 24 hours before inspection. Then found out from a neighbor that the lady was video taping the inside of the apartments. I was not at home during the inspection, I did not receive any notification that she would be taping. Is what she did legal?

Asked on June 21, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Washington

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

What was the purported reason for the inspection?

The videotaping would appear to be an invasion of privacy.  Invasion of privacy is an unreasonable interference with one's right to be left alone.  You could sue the property manager and landlord for invasion of privacy.  You would only file one lawsuit which would name both the property manager and landlord as defendants.

As for the notice to the tenant prior to entering your apartment, the amount of notice a landlord/property manager is required to give varies from state to state.  Generally, it is 24 hours.  If there is an emergency, no notice is required. 


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