What to do if my apartment has water damage due to the toilet in the unit upstairs overflowing?

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What to do if my apartment has water damage due to the toilet in the unit upstairs overflowing?

This has occoured before, however this time the damage is a lot worse. My renters insurance does not cover water damage. I contacted the leasing office to obtain copies of maintanance records on the upstairs unit for the past 2 years. The offie refuses to provide me with those records. Can they do that?

Asked on January 3, 2013 under Real Estate Law, Indiana

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Yes, they can refuse to provide you those records unless you actually sue your landlord or property manager--and generally NOT in small claims court, but rather in regular county court--in which case you could use the legal mechanisms of "discovery" (e.g. document production requests; written interrogatories) to access those documents. If you are going to sue, you  should sue the upstairs neighbor as well as your landlord/property manager--that's because it's possible the plumbing is well maintained, but the problem is the upstairs neighbor is doing something odd or wrong. You want to name all parties in your lawsuit who could possibly be responsible.


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