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barristerinky
barristerinky, Attorney
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 33801
Experience:  Attorney for over 15 years, landlord 26 years
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I rent rooms to college students and one was just discovered

Customer Question

i rent rooms to college students and one was just discovered as being on heroin; what is my liability here as the owner of the house?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Expert:  barristerinky replied 1 year ago.

Hello and welcome! My name is ***** ***** I will try my level best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can.

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Are you asking if you have any responsibility for the person being on heroin?

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Or if you have any criminal liability?

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Or something else?

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thanks

Barrister

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
all of the above--it's an illegal substance
I removed him to his parents house to figure my next plan
I wrote a new house rules page outlining drugs as a zero tolerance but that drug is so addictive.
If he does something weird in the house and hurts himself or someone else, now that i know the possibility of heroin use, how liable am i?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I guess I want to have legal back to ask him not to return. He did trespass into another student's room while "out of it" which lead me to confront him and get picked up.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
led" sorry
Expert:  barristerinky replied 1 year ago.

Ok, you as the landlord don't have any legal liability for the criminal actions of a tenant. If the tenant causes any damages or injures themselves or someone else, they are the only one who could be held liable for their actions.

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But if your lease doesn't have a clause about illegal activity or drugs on the premise as being grounds to terminate the lease and evict, it needs to have it starting with the next tenant. If your tenants are month to month, then you can change the policy with a 30 day written notice to all the month to month tenants.

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If your lease does have a clause about illegal activity, then it would be a good idea to terminate this tenant's lease and evict if they wouldn't voluntarily leave.

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I would also make it very clear to all tenants that you will not hesitate to contact the police if you see any evidence of illegal drug use and let them deal with it. That puts them on notice as well as protects you from any chance of liability if you do contact police if you suspect any type of illegal activity.

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As an aside, in addition to being an attorney, I have also been a landlord for over 26 years...

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thanks

Barrister

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you! I feel very satisfied with your answer.
Expert:  barristerinky replied 1 year ago.

You are very welcome. Glad to help any time..

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If you feel your original question and any related follow ups have been answered, I would very much appreciate a positive rating on the answer I have provided so I receive credit for my work. If you have a new question the JustAnswer folks require that you start a new question page, but you can request me by putting "For Barrister" in the caption and they will get it to me.

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thanks much

Barrister

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