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Ask Dimitry K., Esq. Your Own Question
Dimitry K., Esq.
Dimitry K., Esq., Attorney
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 41221
Experience:  Licensed in multiple jurisdictions. Experienced Landlord-Tenant attorney.
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I am a tenant living in a NC residential home. The owner of

Customer Question

I am a tenant living in a NC residential home. The owner of the NC residential home is my landlord. I have been living in her home as a tenant for 4 months. About a month ago, she got word that her daughter and son-in-law were breaking up. There are two children involved in this breakup, a 5 year old and a 10-month old. The landlord is filing for custody of the two children.
My lease with the landlord expires the end of August 2015. The landlord would like for the tenants to consent to a background check by the State's Social Services Department. The State will come into the home to ensure it is safe and a good environment for the two children. This inspection would include the State interviewing the tenants and performing a background check as I mentioned earlier.
I do not want to consent to a background check by the State as the landlord's business is none of my concern as I do not want to be pulled into this matter in any way nor do I not want to look for another place to live until the end of July/first of August when my lease is ready to expire.
The landlord is forcing the tenants to let her know in 3 days what our intentions are, whether we will stay and consent to the background check by the state or leave in 30 days. The landlord also informed that she may or may not get custody of the children and the process may take 3 mos., 6 mos. or even longer before she hears anything.
In view of this, I intend to complete my lease term and not renew after that since the whole ordeal may end up being a mute issue at this point. I would like to know my legal recourse in this matter! Thank you!
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Expert:  Dimitry K., Esq. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your question. Please permit me to assist you with your concerns. To answer directly, you have absolutely no legal duty to agree or comply with the request for a background check. Furthermore, lack of compliance on your end does not violate the lease terms, and therefore the landlord cannot use your refusal as grounds to terminate the lease early or to attempt to evict you. If you wish to refuse, you are free to do so and if she attempts to evict, you will have grounds via the courts to seek damages over a 'retaliatory eviction'. Sincerely, ***** *****

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