When you sign a contract and move into a rental property such as an apartment or a single-family home, your landlord has certain obligations he/she is required to meet in order to keep the premises in a fit and habitable condition. At no point during the time you are occupying the premises should you be exposed to harmful or hazardous chemicals or other conditions that could be detrimental to your health. In the event you developed a medical condition or your health has steadily been declining and you believe it is because your landlord has exposed you to unhealthy conditions in which he/she refuses to mend, you can take legal action against him or her.
In the state of Iowa, there is something called the Iowa Landlord-Tenant Law which stipulates some of the obligations your landlord must meet. If they fail to comply with the laws outlined in the Landlord-Tenant Law, they can be held liable for their negligence. Some of the things the law requires landlords to do include:
- Comply with all building and housing codes that materially affect health and safety that are applicable to their property.
- Make any and all repairs that are necessary to keep the premises in a fit and habitable condition.
- Keep all common areas safe and clean, as well as “maintain electrical, plumbing, sanitary, heating, ventilating, air-conditioning, and other facilities and appliances supplied or required to be supplied by the landlord.”
- Provide as well as “maintain accessible and appropriate garbage, ash, and other waste receptacles incidental to the occupancy of the dwelling unit and arrange for its removal.”
- “Supply [tenants with] running water, and reasonable amounts of hot water at all times and reasonable heat.”
Now, if you signed an agreement with your landlord that explicitly states that you are required to meet any of the requirements stated above, then it is your duty to comply with them in order to maintain the premises to ensure it is habitable. However, if your landlord breached any part of your contract or the Landlord-Tenant Law which has led to you suffering from any type of health condition or illness, our Iowa personal injury attorneys want to help you recover the compensation you are due for all the pain and suffering your landlord has caused. Our firm has taken on several cases stemming from negligent landlords, including one involving a tenant who was exposed to a significant amount of carbon monoxide causing her to suffer serious brain damage [Source: Insider Exclusive].
Proving Your Landlord was Negligent
In order to hold a landlord accountable for exposing a tenant to hazardous or unsafe conditions you need to prove the “premises [are] unsafe or unsanitary and thus unfit for habitation.” The Landlord-Tenant Law states that a “landlord is only liable for injuries that result from either a hidden defect if the landlord knew or should have known of the defect or if there is a material violation of the housing code.” If the landlord was unaware of the defect and had no reason to know of it, they likely won’t be held liable for any of the injuries you sustained.
Now, if you would like help proving your landlord has exposed you or a loved one to hazardous conditions which can increase your chances of obtaining the compensation you may not only need but also deserve, contact Eells & Tronvold Law Offices, P.L.C. today to schedule an initial consultation. Our IA personal injury lawyers have the skill and ability to help you obtain the justice you deserve and recognize a negligent landlord for failing to provide their tenant with the safe and well-maintained premises they are legally required to deliver. Contact us today to learn more.
You can reach Eells & Tronvold Law Offices, P.L.C. at:
1921 51st Street NE
Cedar Rapids, IA 52402
Phone: (319) 393-1020
Fax: (319) 393-4000