Landlord Retaliation Barred

Landlord retaliation barred

Every lease is a guarantee by a landlord that the premises are fit for human habitation and tenants will not be in danger — a warranty of habitability. Breach of this guarantee can be grounds for a tenant to sue the landlord or, if the landlord started a court action, have the landlord’s action dismissed.

However, tenants are often reluctant to report violations of housing codes or seek enforcement of their legal rights for fear they may be evicted by their landlords. By law, landlords are prohibited from threatening eviction when tenants complain of violations.

For example, in residential rental premises, except owner-occupied dwellings with less than four units, tenants are guaranteed protection against landlord retaliation and cannot be evicted if:
  • A tenant has filed a good faith complaint of an unsafe, unhealthy, or uninhabitable dwelling.
  • A tenant has taken action in good faith to secure his or her rights as a tenant.
  • A tenant participates in a tenant organization.