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Law.Hut
Law.Hut, Lawyer
Category: Canada Law
Satisfied Customers: 6848
Experience:  with over 15 years experience.
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Can I move with short notice if my dogs life is in danger living

Resolved Question:

Can I move with short notice if my dogs life is in danger living at my current apartment?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Canada Law
Expert:  Law.Hut replied 1 year ago.

Hello:

 

Can you explain why the dog's life is in danger? Is the landlord failing to provide some service, or creating some danger that is putting the dog's life at risk?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The building management recently put up a notice informing the tenants that our central air MIGHT be interrupted during the summer due to roof work that needs to be done. They do not know yet whether or not the AC will be interrupted. They said that they will be informing us as they are getting updates. I have an english bulldog. If the AC doesn't work in our apartment, he will suffer a heat stroke and die. This is a fact. He will in fact die. The roof work will be starting July 7 which means we do not have enough time to give our notice to vacate before they start the roof work. We are pretty sure that the AC will be shut off during this time so must move but in order to have given our 60'days notice, we would have had to have given it before may 1 but he notice went up after May 1. I don't think we are allowed to give our notice tomorrow to vacate for the 9th of July. It has to be the first of the month. Is there anything I can do about this?? Thanks so much for your help.
Expert:  Law.Hut replied 1 year ago.
If you move without giving the required notice, the landlord would be able to pursue you for payment of rent during that notice period.

You can be excused from having to give that notice only if you can show that it was a legal necessity to have to move early. You would need to be able to prove that damage to property, as a dog is considered legally a I type of property, would be inevitable unless you moved. That is going to be very difficult. You will need to prove that the dog would die. Your speculation on the point is not going to be sufficient. You would need some expert opinion from a vet for example to show why your dog would nit survive. Also, you need to show that there is no reasonable way that you could avoid those consequences. The court would question why you could not simply have the dogs stay with family, friends, or put it up in a kennel or board it somewhere temporarily, or take steps to keep it cool. It would not be enough to show that such measures are inconvenient or expensive. You need to show that there's reasonably no way are alternative to avoid those consequences, and that it is therefore necessary to move immediately.

Even then, the court may disagree that this is grounds to move without giving proper notice. Just because you choose to have some type of property that is very vulnerable and cannot be a accommodated in the premises does not mean that you would have the right to avoid paying rent during the notice period.

Where this might be different is if you have a term in your rental agreement or lease that says that you are to have air conditioning available to you at all times. In that case, the landlord would be in breach of that term, and based upon your anticipation for that breach you could exit the contract.

The law otherwise not going to be on your side and you have a very difficult up hill battle to try and prove that you should not have to pay rent during the notice period, I suggest that you try to reason with the landlord. You can point out that you will be terribly inconvenienced, to the point that your vulnerable pet may die, because of the landlords work. You have no control or choice about that work. Maybe you can convince the landlord in the circumstances to voluntarily forgo the full notice period.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I'm not trying to withhold rent. I want to move with short notice. I don't want to have to pay to board my dog in a kennel. That costs a lot of money. Am I able to take the cost of the kennel out of my rent? I am also not willing to give my dog to a friend during the time of the work. It will be an inconvenience to my friends. I also don't trust anyone else to take care of my dog for a long period of time. I can get my vet to write a letter stating that my dog will suffer a heat stroke and die without the AC working.

So you're essentially saying that I must give my 60 days notice if I want to move to protect my dog? There's nothing I can do?
Expert:  Law.Hut replied 1 year ago.

I am saying that you must give 60 days notice if you want stop renting or at least pay the rent that would otherwise be payable in that 60 days. You can move anytime you want to.

 

No, you could not legally deduct costs of a kennel from your rent. But maybe the landlord would be willing to give you a reduction on your rent to account for that. Your legal rights here are not strong to insist or force anything to happen. But often two sides can agree on a compromise, as the landlord may see some value in keeping an existing tenant happy in allowing some small reduction in rent or so on, given that it is their work and their fault that you are going to face such inconvenience or cost. So it is worthwhile to ask them. But if they simply refuse and insist that you pay the full rent, and if they choose to actually pursue you if you move out without paying the next 60 days of rent, then I do not think you could succeed in court on the basis that you say your dog will die without AC. A court will likely say that you have options to avoid that, and it is not the contractual responsibility of the landlords.

Law.Hut, Lawyer
Category: Canada Law
Satisfied Customers: 6848
Experience: with over 15 years experience.
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