Isa landlord responsible for theft damages if break-in occurs?

UPDATED: Sep 6, 2011

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Isa landlord responsible for theft damages if break-in occurs?

I live in FL in a trailer that has very few working windows. The ones that do work do not lock. My landlord has known since I have moved in almost a year ago. This weekend my house was burglarized. They entered through one of the windows that does not have a lock on it. Background on house – it has been broken into before. We live in bad neighborhood as I am finding out now. When I asked him what we can do about this issue he first asked if I have renter’s insurance but I don’t (my fault). Then he said to put the screw back in the window to seal shut. Isn’t that a fire hazard as well?

Asked on September 6, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Florida


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

In most states in this country if a landlord knows that his or her rental is in a high crime zone or has had problems with it beforehand such as burglaries, the landlord is required to disclose such to a prospective tenant in that this information is something that a possible tenant would rely upon in making a determination to rent a property or not.

You need to determine if the local building department requires locks on the inside of your windows. If such are a requirement, then the landlord was in violation of local building requirements as well which the absence of the locks made it easier for the break in.

From what you have written there is a fair chance that your landlord may be responsible for reimbursing you the fair market value of the items taken due to his or her failure to advise you before the lease was entered into of prior break ins.

Good luck.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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