I live in an apartment
in the state of California, in the county of Santa Clara. It is a luxury apartment complex in the heart of the Silicon Valley. I am almost at the end of my lease and will be moving to a different complex at that time, if not before.
I have a serious mold issue in my complex which initially was not recognized by the complex staff and was, therefore, treated without using generally accepted clean-up procedures. This has posed a health risk to me and at the height of my exposure I suffered severe asthma attacks that did not respond to home treatment requiring me to seek medical attention, allergic reations, personal property damage, and mental/emotional distress also requiring to seek medical attention. The complex now is working more diligently to rectify the situation. I have been registered in a hotel and will be staying there until my apartment is habitable. The complex has given me a per diem living allowance. The allowance, however, does to address all of the issues regarding my temporary displacement and I, therefore, have the following main questions:
First, is it reasonable to ask the apartment complex to also reimburse me for transportation expenses. They initially said they would but the complex manager later recanted indicating that she was merely offering up an opinion and had no authority to give me offical direction or make any commitments on behalf of the corporation. I expressed that I incured expenses in good faith based on my conversations with and direction from her. I have escalated this to her manager who is staying firm on their inability to compensate me for transportation. All I am asking for is that they reimburse me for travel expense to and from the hotel and complex and to and from doctor appointments that I must attend to treat my mold exposure. This may seem like a small point but it has significant implications.
Second, they will not reimburse me for any doctor visits that are in direct corrilation to the mold exposure. No co-pay, no medicine, nothing.
Third, it is important to note that evenually they recognized that they had a serious issue on their hands and are working with me to help me stay safe during the clean-up process. However, the living allowance does not address all living decisions that I must make as a result of my displacement. As an example, I had to check into a hotel with just the clothes on my back. They currently will not pay for me to have my clothes, even my soiled underwear, laundered. I have made it clear to them that I DO NOT want, nor do I expect to buy clothes for the duration of my displacement. I simply want the clothes I am currently wearing cleaned. There is another issue. I am currently at my credit limit because I have been charging hotel and other living expenses that they have approved to my credit card. I am in a situation where I have not more resources to pay for my stay at the hotel or meals. They have told me to stay at a hotel at least until next Wednesday (7-24-13). I do not know what to do at this point.
There are a lot of other issues that I face, this being only a thumbnail sketch.
I have contacted the California Code Enforcement division (7-16-13) and have opened a case with them. I have been working with my attorney who has clearly stated that this situation is out of his scope, I have asked him for a referral and he is trying to get one.
I need to know what my tenant rights are in the State of California.
I look forward to your response.