Landlord sued to recover for nonpayment of rent. Tenant counterclaimed for return of his security deposit. Tenant testified he was terrified in his apartment and neighborhood, had been threatened and that someone tried to break into his unit.
Tenant alleged that his and his wife’s lives were in danger and informed landlord of his intent to move out immediately. He did not obtain permission from landlord to terminate the lease before its expiration.
The Bronx County, New York Civil Court stated landlord did not owe tenants a duty to protect them in their residence from the dangers of the neighborhood, stating a landlord was not an insurer of tenant safety. It stated landlord must know or have reason to know third parties could endanger tenants’ safety, noting no testimony was presented regarding any past criminal activity in the building.
The court found the building had self-closing, self-locking doors, stating while the doors were not always locked, it was adduced the tenants would leave the doors open. Thus, it concluded as no duty existed by landlord to tenants to ensure their safety and no permission was given to terminate the lease early, judgment was granted for landlord and tenant’s counterclaim was dismissed.
If you have a an issue with your landlord – or tenant – in the Buffalo area, why not call 716-542-5444 for a legal consultation with a Buffalo Landlord – Tenant Attorney.