What to do if my landloard put rat poison in the common areas of my apartment building but didn’t notify us and our dog ate it and we had to take her to the vet?

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What to do if my landloard put rat poison in the common areas of my apartment building but didn’t notify us and our dog ate it and we had to take her to the vet?

She knows we have dogs; we paid a pet deposit. We have $400 in vet bills. Is she liable for not disclosing the poison to her tenants?

Asked on July 1, 2015 under Real Estate Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

The landlord may indeed by liable, since it was most likely negligent, or unreasonably careless, to not warn or notify residents of the poison. As you point out, the landlord knows you have a dog; even if other tenants do not have pets, they may have young children who could eat the poison; or guests who have pets or young children. When there is a reasonable risk of injury, it is negligent to not take common sense steps to reduce the risk. Since it is probably negligent to not notify occupants of a residential building, where there are/may be pets and/or young children of poison, the landlord is most likely liable for the costs (like your vet bill) caused by his negligence.


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