Author Topic: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!  (Read 9910 times)

Denver Landlord

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« on: November 19, 2015, 01:06:14 PM »
Last year in November I had a problem with a boiler in a building.  The vendor actually broke the cast iron and I wound up replacing the whole unit.  I offered hotel rooms and space heaters while we rushed to get the new boiler installed.

One tenant was really nasty, so I gave her a notice to quit in late November using my law firm's form, effective for the end of December.  She instead left after 3 days, and didn't pay December's rent.  She then sued me in small claims court, saying that her place was uninhabitable for November (no one else in the building agreed).

I hired a lawyer, and the judge agreed with us that we didn't everything possible to fix the situation as quickly as possible, and that I didn't owe her November's rent.

However, he also ruled that she didn't owe December's rent, even though the lease stipulates 30-day notice!  This clown said that my notice said that she had to be out by the end of December, and even though it was the end of November she was in compliance.  He ignored the 30-day clause.

My lawyer strongly disagreed.  We filed an appeal earlier this year.  I just found out that the original judge's decision stands.   My appellate lawyer called it an absurd decision.  We are going to appeal this latest ruling to the state supreme court.  We could lose there, too.

The point is that you never know how these things will go.  Here it seems that you can give a tenant notice to quit, they can leave immediately, ignoring the lease's 30-day clause, and owe nothing.




undercover

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 957
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2015, 01:17:48 PM »
Although I agree that the judge shafted you in a way, it sounds like a win-win to me. You got your money for November and got rid of a problematic tenant. I'm sure she was demanding November's rent back.

Denver Landlord

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2015, 01:20:37 PM »
I see what you mean, but I wouldn't call it win/win.  There is no way that I owed her November's rent, but she did owe me December's rent.  I'll let you know how it goes with our next appeal.

I enjoy these legal tangles.  They are good learning experiences.  When I'm wrong, I make things right with my tenants.  When I'm right, I take it to the mat.

This tenant was completely unreasonable. 

realityinabox

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 85
  • Age: 32
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #3 on: November 19, 2015, 01:37:38 PM »
Just out of curiosity, how much was the lost rent vs. lawyer's fees and effort put forth to reclaim it? 

Clean Shaven

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 809
  • Location: Wild Wild West
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2015, 01:38:20 PM »

We filed an appeal earlier this year.  I just found out that the original judge's decision stands.   My appellate lawyer called it an absurd decision.  We are going to appeal this latest ruling to the state supreme court.  We could lose there, too.

How much are you going to spend in fees + costs vs. that one month's rent?

Another Reader

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5145
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #5 on: November 19, 2015, 01:40:29 PM »
I have to wonder if we are being trolled here.  If not, it's folks like you that give landlords a bad name. 

I'll bet you spent big bucks on this case, with more checks to write to take this to the state supreme court (if they even take the case).  Your lawyers will be happy to have your business, win or lose.  I'll bet your tenant got pro bono representation, or she would not have gone this far with the case.

If you are in this business to make money, in my opinion you are going about it wrong.  After a couple more cases, the judges are not going to take kindly to seeing your face (and the faces of your attorneys) in their court rooms, especially when you call them clowns in a public forum.  You are going to get a reputation in town as an unreasonable landlord, and the good tenants will shy away from your properties. 

For newbies that want to become real estate investors - this and the OP's other thread are important.  Figuring our what kind of landlord you want to be is part of the process.

CmFtns

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 583
  • Age: 29
  • Location: Melbourne, Fl
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #6 on: November 19, 2015, 01:46:11 PM »

We filed an appeal earlier this year.  I just found out that the original judge's decision stands.   My appellate lawyer called it an absurd decision.  We are going to appeal this latest ruling to the state supreme court.  We could lose there, too.

How much are you going to spend in fees + costs vs. that one month's rent?

I agree this is the type of thing you let go... I can't imagine how you haven't paid at least 10 times the 1 month's rent so far in lawyers fees.

Denver Landlord

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #7 on: November 19, 2015, 01:53:12 PM »
Comfyfutons, I have the resources and the will to stand up when I'm right.  Cost is secondary.  Legal fees are just another business expense.  I had to pay a lot in capital gains last year, and this helps.  I never want the reputation of being a pushover.

Cathy

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1046
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #8 on: November 19, 2015, 02:02:16 PM »
Very often in a lawsuit, both sides believe that their position is legally sound. That is why they are engaged in the lawsuit rather than settling the case. The OP here says their lawyer alleges that OP should have won. Meanwhile, the tenant's lawyer probably believes that the courts came to the right conclusion.

The fact of the matter is that the OP has lost twice. Judges do make mistakes, and their decisions could be wrong, but it's also possible -- and more likely -- that the OP's position actually lacks merit, and that the decisions were correct. Property law is complicated and is not well understood by the general population. At the very least, we can't evaluate the merits of these court decisions without actually reading the opinions of the court. The information in OP's posts does not allow us to conclude that there is anything wrong with these decisions.

Clean Shaven

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 809
  • Location: Wild Wild West
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #9 on: November 19, 2015, 02:04:58 PM »
Comfyfutons, I have the resources and the will to stand up when I'm right.  Cost is secondary.  Legal fees are just another business expense.  I had to pay a lot in capital gains last year, and this helps.  I never want the reputation of being a pushover.

What sort of reputation are you looking to build?

gReed Smith

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 170
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #10 on: November 19, 2015, 02:10:24 PM »
No heat in a building is a pretty classic law-school example of a lease that is void because the building is uninhabitable.  I don't know how Colorado has amended that common law rule, but my guess is the judge found that the tenant was reasonable in abandoning the lease. 

Denver Landlord

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #11 on: November 19, 2015, 02:13:19 PM »
Cathy, you're missing the point.  You're trying to sound like you know what you're talking about, but you don't.    You don't have the facts, but you think you know the answer.

If you did, or if you were a landlord, you'd see the problem with a court allowing a tenant to quit early and not being responsible for rent.  But then, you're obviously not a lawyer.

The lawyers that tried these cases work for a firm that only practices landlord/tenant law. All agree that the outcome was unanticipated and absurd.  But you know better...

gReed Smith, you're wrong.  You missed the part of the post that said that the judge disallowed their claim on that aspect of the case.
« Last Edit: November 19, 2015, 02:19:04 PM by Denver Landlord »

Denver Landlord

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #12 on: November 19, 2015, 02:26:18 PM »
Comfyfutons, I have the resources and the will to stand up when I'm right.  Cost is secondary.  Legal fees are just another business expense.  I had to pay a lot in capital gains last year, and this helps.  I never want the reputation of being a pushover.

What sort of reputation are you looking to build?

I have already done it.  When I recently sold a building I received e-mails from several tenants saying that they appreciated my fairness and commitment to maintaining the building and their unit.  In the building that I recently bought, there was no real management, and the tenants did things as they please.  That's changing.  I run my business as a business.  I have a reputation for great service and for expecting tenants to maintain their side of the bargain.
« Last Edit: November 19, 2015, 02:31:02 PM by Denver Landlord »

Cathy

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1046
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #13 on: November 19, 2015, 02:33:39 PM »
Cathy, you're missing the point. ... You don't have the facts, but you think you know the answer. ...

Maybe you should read my post more closely. It says "we can't evaluate the merits of these court decisions without actually reading the opinions of the court". You've posted a thread here to denounce certain judicial opinions, without actually providing enough information to evaluate the opinions. Believe it or not, the fact that your lawyers say that the opinions are wrong is not proof that they are wrong.

Another Reader

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5145
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #14 on: November 19, 2015, 02:39:45 PM »
+1 to Cathy's statements.  Looks like at least some of the information for the Colorado Appeals Court is online, although yours is probably an unpublished opinion.  Would you mind sharing the case numbers and other references?

Denver Landlord

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #15 on: November 19, 2015, 02:44:05 PM »
Cathy, you're missing the point. ... You don't have the facts, but you think you know the answer. ...

Maybe you should read my post more closely. It says "we can't evaluate the merits of these court decisions without actually reading the opinions of the court". You've posted a thread here to denounce certain judicial opinions, without actually providing enough information to evaluate the opinions. Believe it or not, the fact that your lawyers say that the opinions are wrong is not proof that they are wrong.

It's not proof that they are not wrong.

I did read your post, and I will again say that you're wrong.  You also wrote: "...and more likely -- that the OP's position actually lacks merit, and that the decisions were correct. Property law is complicated and is not well understood by the general population."

You have no way of knowing that my position lacks merit, or that the courts positions are correct or incorrect.  Just wanting that to be the case doesn't make it so.  Also, the general population isn't involved here.  Two lawyers with extensive landlord/tenant experience and landlord with 16 years of experience are the ones involved.




Denver Landlord

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #16 on: November 19, 2015, 02:47:01 PM »
+1 to Cathy's statements.  Looks like at least some of the information for the Colorado Appeals Court is online, although yours is probably an unpublished opinion.  Would you mind sharing the case numbers and other references?

It's good that Cathy has friends (if you're not actually her).  I did ask the lawyer about that, and he said that it was an unpublished option.  (I didn't know that there was such a thing).  If it makes it to the state supreme court, I'd think there would be an opinion.

Goldielocks

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6637
  • Location: BC
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #17 on: November 19, 2015, 02:47:44 PM »
Very often in a lawsuit, both sides believe that their position is legally sound. That is why they are engaged in the lawsuit rather than settling the case. The OP here says their lawyer alleges that OP should have won. Meanwhile, the tenant's lawyer probably believes that the courts came to the right conclusion.

The fact of the matter is that the OP has lost twice. Judges do make mistakes, and their decisions could be wrong, but it's also possible -- and more likely -- that the OP's position actually lacks merit, and that the decisions were correct. Property law is complicated and is not well understood by the general population. At the very least, we can't evaluate the merits of these court decisions without actually reading the opinions of the court. The information in OP's posts does not allow us to conclude that there is anything wrong with these decisions.
Good post, Cathy

therethere

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 765
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #18 on: November 19, 2015, 02:48:51 PM »
Curious as to what made you sign up for the forums today and post these two threads? You aren't asking for advice. You are shooting down all responses (within 5 minutes or less very impressive!). You have a very high opinion of yourself and that you are absolutely always right and have proven you will fight for it. Sooooooo what exactly are you looking for?

beltim

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2853
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #19 on: November 19, 2015, 02:49:49 PM »
Cathy, you're missing the point. ... You don't have the facts, but you think you know the answer. ...

Maybe you should read my post more closely. It says "we can't evaluate the merits of these court decisions without actually reading the opinions of the court". You've posted a thread here to denounce certain judicial opinions, without actually providing enough information to evaluate the opinions. Believe it or not, the fact that your lawyers say that the opinions are wrong is not proof that they are wrong.

It's not proof that they are not wrong.

I did read your post, and I will again say that you're wrong.  You also wrote: "...and more likely -- that the OP's position actually lacks merit, and that the decisions were correct. Property law is complicated and is not well understood by the general population."

You have no way of knowing that my position lacks merit, or that the courts positions are correct or incorrect.  Just wanting that to be the case doesn't make it so.  Also, the general population isn't involved here.  Two lawyers with extensive landlord/tenant experience and landlord with 16 years of experience are the ones involved.

Plus an original judge and an appellate judge.

What are you looking for with this thread?  You haven't given us enough information to help judge whether the judicial decision is reasonable or not, but it doesn't seem like that's why you came here.

Denver Landlord

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #20 on: November 19, 2015, 02:52:25 PM »
Cathy, you're missing the point. ... You don't have the facts, but you think you know the answer. ...

Maybe you should read my post more closely. It says "we can't evaluate the merits of these court decisions without actually reading the opinions of the court". You've posted a thread here to denounce certain judicial opinions, without actually providing enough information to evaluate the opinions. Believe it or not, the fact that your lawyers say that the opinions are wrong is not proof that they are wrong.

It's not proof that they are not wrong.

I did read your post, and I will again say that you're wrong.  You also wrote: "...and more likely -- that the OP's position actually lacks merit, and that the decisions were correct. Property law is complicated and is not well understood by the general population."

You have no way of knowing that my position lacks merit, or that the courts positions are correct or incorrect.  Just wanting that to be the case doesn't make it so.  Also, the general population isn't involved here.  Two lawyers with extensive landlord/tenant experience and landlord with 16 years of experience are the ones involved.

Plus an original judge and an appellate judge.

What are you looking for with this thread?  You haven't given us enough information to help judge whether the judicial decision is reasonable or not, but it doesn't seem like that's why you came here.

It's not.  My main point was that you can THINK you're right about something, and according to common sense and your knowledge of law and leases you're right, but crazy stuff can happen.  You can lose even when you're right.

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3057
  • Location: Emmaus, PA
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #21 on: November 19, 2015, 02:54:32 PM »
Curious as to what made you sign up for the forums today and post these two threads? You aren't asking for advice. You are shooting down all responses (within 5 minutes or less very impressive!). You have a very high opinion of yourself and that you are absolutely always right and have proven you will fight for it. Sooooooo what exactly are you looking for?

This is my question too.

undercover

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 957
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #22 on: November 19, 2015, 02:54:39 PM »
I did read your post, and I will again say that you're wrong

You have no way of knowing that my position lacks merit, or that the courts positions are correct or incorrect.

...therefore Cathy is not "wrong" since there's no way to know one way or the other. I 100% agree with Cathy.

As I said before, you should of taken what you got. In fact, you should of just showed up at small claims and hoped to not paying anything further without going through the pointless exercise of hiring a lawyer. The judge would of sided with you on November's rent at least, and you wouldn't be out all these pointless legal fees. Running a business doesn't involve standing your ground until the world bows to you.

Kaspian

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1536
  • Location: Canada
    • My Necronomicon of Badassity
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #23 on: November 19, 2015, 02:54:44 PM »
Very often in a lawsuit, both sides believe that their position is legally sound. That is why they are engaged in the lawsuit rather than settling the case. The OP here says their lawyer alleges that OP should have won. Meanwhile, the tenant's lawyer probably believes that the courts came to the right conclusion.

The fact of the matter is that the OP has lost twice. Judges do make mistakes, and their decisions could be wrong, but it's also possible -- and more likely -- that the OP's position actually lacks merit, and that the decisions were correct. Property law is complicated and is not well understood by the general population. At the very least, we can't evaluate the merits of these court decisions without actually reading the opinions of the court. The information in OP's posts does not allow us to conclude that there is anything wrong with these decisions.
Good post, Cathy

Aren't judges also allowed to declare certain clauses in a contract were unreasonable expectations or conditions? 

Denver Landlord

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #24 on: November 19, 2015, 02:56:37 PM »
Very often in a lawsuit, both sides believe that their position is legally sound. That is why they are engaged in the lawsuit rather than settling the case. The OP here says their lawyer alleges that OP should have won. Meanwhile, the tenant's lawyer probably believes that the courts came to the right conclusion.

The fact of the matter is that the OP has lost twice. Judges do make mistakes, and their decisions could be wrong, but it's also possible -- and more likely -- that the OP's position actually lacks merit, and that the decisions were correct. Property law is complicated and is not well understood by the general population. At the very least, we can't evaluate the merits of these court decisions without actually reading the opinions of the court. The information in OP's posts does not allow us to conclude that there is anything wrong with these decisions.
Good post, Cathy

Aren't judges also allowed to declare certain clauses in a contract were unreasonable expectations or conditions?

Absolutely.

Clean Shaven

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 809
  • Location: Wild Wild West
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #25 on: November 19, 2015, 03:10:26 PM »
You can lose even when you're right.

But so long as you're willing to keep fighting (and paying to fight), your lawyers win.  So at least there's that.

Bearded Man

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1142
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #26 on: November 19, 2015, 08:13:39 PM »
I don't believe, in my opinion based on her posts, that Cathy is an actual attorney, FYI...

arebelspy

  • Administrator
  • Senior Mustachian
  • *****
  • Posts: 28239
  • Age: -999
  • Location: Seattle, WA
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #27 on: November 20, 2015, 05:32:09 AM »
I don't believe she has claimed to be (though often her posts read like they were written by one, and might mislead people to think she was one).

Regardless, her point was correct--not enough info was given to judge the validity of the OPs case.
We are two former teachers who accumulated a bunch of real estate, retired at 29, spent some time traveling the world full time and are now settled with three kids.
If you want to know more about us, or how we did that, or see lots of pictures, this Business Insider profile tells our story pretty well.
We (rarely) blog at AdventuringAlong.com. Check out our Now page to see what we're up to currently.

Jack

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4734
  • Location: Atlanta, GA
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #28 on: November 20, 2015, 08:23:35 AM »
I don't believe she has claimed to be (though often her posts read like they were written by one, and might mislead people to think she was one).

I think I remember her saying once that she's a software developer or something.

Regardless, she knows a ridiculous amount of case law for a non-attorney. I almost wonder if she's some kind of experimental chat bot that somebody hooked up to the LexisNexis database, but she's way too coherent for that to actually be the case.

waffle

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 286
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #29 on: November 20, 2015, 09:07:55 AM »
Just going to throw this out there, but if she left in December without paying rent wouldn't you just keep her security deposit and call it good? Isn't that what security deposits are for? I see no reason why this would have to go to court.

GuitarStv

  • Senior Mustachian
  • ********
  • Posts: 14602
  • Age: 38
  • Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #30 on: November 20, 2015, 09:18:07 AM »
I don't believe she has claimed to be (though often her posts read like they were written by one, and might mislead people to think she was one).

I think I remember her saying once that she's a software developer or something.

Regardless, she knows a ridiculous amount of case law for a non-attorney. I almost wonder if she's some kind of experimental chat bot that somebody hooked up to the LexisNexis database, but she's way too coherent for that to actually be the case.

Or she's a hell of a programmer . . .


:P

Another Reader

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5145
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #31 on: November 20, 2015, 09:26:24 AM »
Some of the most knowledgeable legal experts in my experience were legal secretaries that had 30 years of experience and knew more than their sometimes much younger bosses.  Paralegals are often very knowledgeable, as they spend their careers researching cases.  And then there are a lot of law school graduates out there that don't end up practicing law.  Whether the law is Cathy's hobby or profession, I find her comments interesting and helpful. 

Goldielocks

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6637
  • Location: BC
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #32 on: November 20, 2015, 10:05:29 AM »
Some of the most knowledgeable legal experts in my experience were legal secretaries that had 30 years of experience and knew more than their sometimes much younger bosses.  Paralegals are often very knowledgeable, as they spend their careers researching cases.  And then there are a lot of law school graduates out there that don't end up practicing law.  Whether the law is Cathy's hobby or profession, I find her comments interesting and helpful.
Sort of like getting financial advice from a MMM blog post. The madfientist, or even Arpelspy?

Licensed or no, we all can decide for ourselves what makes up great advice and we get that advice from many sources.

Cathy

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1046
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #33 on: November 20, 2015, 10:22:08 AM »
Do fall for every scam when somebody tries to convince you to give you there money...

To be clear, I didn't intend to suggest that OP's lawyers were deliberately misleading the OP about the chances of success on appeal or about the merits of the case in general. In fact, comment 1 to Colorado Rule of Professional Conduct 2.1 expressly provides that "[a] client is entitled to straightforward advice expressing the lawyer's honest assessment" (emphasis added). It is improper for a lawyer to intentionally misrepresent the merits of an argument to a client. In fact, the requirement of high ethical standards is part of the common justification for the regulatory system governing lawyers. See, e.g., Colorado Supreme Court Rule 208(1); People v. Morley, 725 P2d 510, 519 (CO Sup Ct 1986) (discussing the "moral standards that the public has the right to expect of a lawyer"). But see, e.g., Judge Richard A. Posner, The Material Basis of Jurisprudence, 69 Ind L J 1, 15 (1993) (describing such requirements, at least in part, as "a series of hoops" which operate as "restrictions on competition").

In the absence of any evidence that OP's lawyers are unethical, I think we can assume that they are acting in good faith and are expressing their honest view that the case was wrongly decided by the courts. However, that good faith belief is orthogonal to the question of whether the case was actually wrongly decided by the courts. The number of years of experience those lawyers have is also not directly relevant to whether the courts wrongly decided the case. In general, courts endeavour to "judg[e] the case rather than the parties [or their representatives]". Schmude v. Tricam Industries, 556 F3d 624, 627 (7th Cir 2009) (Posner, J). You can't win in court simply by asserting that you have more experience than the judge or opposing counsel. In fact, the case law is filled with examples of cases where the argument of an inexperienced person -- sometimes not a licensed lawyer -- was accepted over the argument of somebody with many years of experience.

To name just one well-known recent example, in Byers v. Commissioner, 740 F3d 668 (DC Cir 2014), the Court considered the question of the proper venue for certain tax appeals. Specifically, the issue was whether the appeals in question should be heard in the regional court of appeals where the taxpayer lived, or rather in the court of appeals for the District of Columbia. Longstanding practice suggested that the regional courts were the correct place to file the appeal. The government's lawyers, who had a large number of years of experience, also argued strenuously that the regional courts were the correct venue. However, the Court found that the DC Court was actually the correct venue. In making that decision, the Court explicitly adopted the contents of an article written by James Bamberg, who, at the time the article was written, was only a law student. Id, at 670-71. In agreeing fully with Mr. Bamberg's argument, the Court did not even mention that he was a student, because it was totally irrelevant to the fact that he was right. Mr. Byers, who brought the article to the Court's attention, was also not a licensed lawyer.

There are a variety of reasons why I don't discuss my background on the forum, but most importantly, it doesn't matter, because in making these posts I am not acting in the capacity of a lawyer. That would be true regardless of which licences I hold. My law-related posts contain only general technical information on topics that I find interesting. My posts are similar to reference works such as a textbook or a law review article. My posts are written for a general audience, not necessarily the people who have posted in the thread; and indeed, my posts are often not even directly useful to the person who started the thread, as I tend to write about more abstract matters than the person really wanted to hear about. I also do not make the factual inquiries that would be required to give specific advice. This is also a public forum where confidential tactical discussion is not even possible. My posts are fundamentally different from what you would receive if you retained counsel for legal advice. As mentioned, my posts are more analogous to a reference work. I'm happy that some people appreciate them.
« Last Edit: November 20, 2015, 07:36:13 PM by Cathy »

sixup

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 123
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #34 on: November 20, 2015, 10:22:19 AM »
Seems kind of ridiculous to try to "take this to the mat" over one month of rent. Kind of like the grumpy old guy with nothing better to do that holds up the line in the grocery store over like 25 cents. "It's the PRINCIPLE of the matter!"

gReed Smith

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 170
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #35 on: November 20, 2015, 11:26:50 AM »
TO join in Cathy's point, I find it very easy to convince myself that a client is right.  All humans selectively ignore facts in order to rationalize decisions that we want to make for other subconscious reasons.  It can make others appear to be unreasonable, even when we are being unreasonable ourselves.

On the other hand, if OP is a jerk and the judge knew it, his own subconscious might make him rule against the weight of the evidence.

Dicey

  • Senior Mustachian
  • ********
  • Posts: 11447
  • Age: 61
  • Location: NorCal
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #36 on: November 20, 2015, 11:37:33 AM »
Last year in November I had a problem with a boiler in a building.  The vendor actually broke the cast iron and I wound up replacing the whole unit.  I offered hotel rooms and space heaters while we rushed to get the new boiler installed.

One tenant was really nasty...
1. You conveniently did not share how long your poor tenants did not have heat and how long it took you to offer them "hotel rooms and space heaters". Very salient details you neglected to mention. Denver, in November, is not exactly shorts and sandals weather.

2. I find you, sir, to have this in common with your tenant. Your responses here are much less than polite. Please shape up or ship out.

brooklynguy

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2207
  • Age: 39
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #37 on: November 20, 2015, 01:37:01 PM »
I almost wonder if she's some kind of experimental chat bot that somebody hooked up to the LexisNexis database, but she's way too coherent for that to actually be the case.

Yes, Cathy has definitely stolen arebelspy's crown as the poster most likely to be an example of artificial intelligence.

Bearded Man

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1142
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #38 on: November 22, 2015, 09:04:40 AM »
Can one just send them to collections instead of going to court? If you are looking to not let them get off completely without consequence, could this not be a cheaper alternative?


waffle

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 286
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #39 on: November 23, 2015, 09:18:26 AM »
Can one just send them to collections instead of going to court? If you are looking to not let them get off completely without consequence, could this not be a cheaper alternative?



It sounds like the tenant was the one that originally took it to court to try to get Novembers rent back. The OP then decided it would be a good idea to appeal and then possibly appeal again.

Kouhri

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 54
  • Location: Auckland - New Zealand
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #40 on: November 27, 2015, 03:55:45 AM »
Curious as to what made you sign up for the forums today and post these two threads? You aren't asking for advice. You are shooting down all responses (within 5 minutes or less very impressive!). You have a very high opinion of yourself and that you are absolutely always right and have proven you will fight for it. Sooooooo what exactly are you looking for?

Maybe OP wanted their ego of being the biggest baddest landlord out there padded. I imagine OP is sorely dissapointed.

But seriously chasing 1 months rent to the end of the judiciary system WTF

FIRE me

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1099
  • Location: Louisville, KY
  • So much technology, so little talent.
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #41 on: November 29, 2015, 07:11:24 PM »
+1 to Cathy's statements.  Looks like at least some of the information for the Colorado Appeals Court is online, although yours is probably an unpublished opinion.  Would you mind sharing the case numbers and other references?
It's good that Cathy has friends (if you're not actually her). 

Oh, Cathy. You devious devious female. You made a sock puppet account and then used it to make 3,000 posts, just waiting for the right moment to support your “Cathy” account, in a discussion with a stranger on the interest. Such guile. Such cunning. Such planning.

TrulyStashin

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1030
  • Location: Mid-Sized Southern City
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #42 on: November 29, 2015, 09:05:36 PM »
Can one just send them to collections instead of going to court? If you are looking to not let them get off completely without consequence, could this not be a cheaper alternative?

You'd need a judgment order from a court to authorize the collection of the debt.

adamcollin

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 154
  • Age: 29
  • Location: Texas
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #43 on: November 29, 2015, 10:24:06 PM »
I understand what you have been through. That is why a thorough tenant screening is a must before renting your home.

arebelspy

  • Administrator
  • Senior Mustachian
  • *****
  • Posts: 28239
  • Age: -999
  • Location: Seattle, WA
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #44 on: December 01, 2015, 04:07:29 AM »

+1 to Cathy's statements.  Looks like at least some of the information for the Colorado Appeals Court is online, although yours is probably an unpublished opinion.  Would you mind sharing the case numbers and other references?
It's good that Cathy has friends (if you're not actually her). 

Oh, Cathy. You devious devious female. You made a sock puppet account and then used it to make 3,000 posts, just waiting for the right moment to support your “Cathy” account, in a discussion with a stranger on the interest. Such guile. Such cunning. Such planning.

I laughed. Well played. :)
We are two former teachers who accumulated a bunch of real estate, retired at 29, spent some time traveling the world full time and are now settled with three kids.
If you want to know more about us, or how we did that, or see lots of pictures, this Business Insider profile tells our story pretty well.
We (rarely) blog at AdventuringAlong.com. Check out our Now page to see what we're up to currently.

sstants

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 128
  • Location: Boston
Re: Tenant Quit Early and Won Lawsuit!
« Reply #45 on: December 03, 2015, 11:50:21 AM »
Dude, you gotta treat your tenants like humans!

I've had good landlords and bad landlords. I always pay rent on the first of the month and maintain the property like it is my own home, I'm pretty sure I'm a great tenant. Some landlords have been great to me and treat me like a person and others treat me like a business transaction and an investment. Who do you think I am happier with and more likely to give a break when something goes wrong with the house?!

It's also not wise to litigate on principal. Let your tenant go and learn from the situation. Litigate on 6 months unpaid rent, not a girl that obviously wanted out of a bad living situation! No one will know what happened if you don't talk about it, and if you could have resolved it amicably instead of entering the dispute in the public record no one would have known about it.