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Dwayne B.
Dwayne B., Attorney
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 32154
Experience:  Began practicing law in 1992
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We rented a commercial building for over 3 years. The last

Customer Question

We rented a commercial building for over 3 years. The last year we did not have a lease. We gave the landlord 60 day notice of our intent to move . The landlord has now told us that we owe over 7000.00 for damages to the property. We don't agree with this . He is harassing us what can we do?
Submitted: 2 months ago.
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 2 months ago.

Hello and thank you for contacting us. This is Dwayne B. and I’m an expert here and looking forward to assisting you today.

Has he provided any proof as to the "damages"? Also, what did the written lease say about damages?

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
There isn't anything in the lease about damages. He provided us with written estimates of proposed damages.
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 2 months ago.

Does he have any money of yours like from a security deposit?

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
but it won't cover the entire amount he claims we owe for damages.
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 2 months ago.

All right, I think I have most of the basis facts for now. Is there a specific question with which I could assist? I see you asked "what can we do" but that isn't really specific enough to provide an answer that will be helpful to you.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
If I don't agree with the amount of damages what is the best course if action we should take?
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 2 months ago.

You have a couple of options. You can either wait for him to sue you and then defend the case or you can sue him and ask the court for a "declaratory judgment" as to what, if anything, you owe him.

It's a little harder for him to collect if there were no damages outlined in the original lease. Even though that lease has expired, since you are a "hold over" the judge will likely say that the terms of it apply to your case anyway.

You and he can both sue for your attorney's fees and the judge is likely to award them to whoever wins the case.

If your question has been answered then I'd offer my best wishes to you and ask that you please not forget to leave a Positive Rating so I receive credit for my work. Of course, please feel free to ask any follow up questions in this thread. I want to be sure that all of your questions are answered.

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