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Old 06-02-2011, 05:49 PM
1 posts, read 6,062 times
Reputation: 10


Hi y'all. Just found this forum. I have lived in my apartment for 2.5 years and have been a good tenant but my health is failing rapidly. I have severe nerve damage in my legs and there is no disabled access to our building. To complicate the issue the elevator is frequently non-functioning, sometimes for days. I've done some 'Net research on this situation and haven't found anything that gives me hope that I can get out of this lease on hardship. I haven't spoken with management yet. I'd like to be armed with some knowledge before hand. We have a management company that is suddenly turning very hardcore. The company has actually violated EEOC and ADA regs in other parts of the country so my gut feeling is that they're not going to be open to just letting me limp away from here without paying for the duration of the lease. I don't want to just bail and end up in court and/or having my rental history damaged. Does anyone have experience with this issue or can suggest some steps to proceed in a way that satisfies both parties?

Thank you in advance.
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Old 06-02-2011, 06:07 PM
Location: The High Seas
7,379 posts, read 13,300,335 times
Reputation: 11697
I don't know what to tell you, but I'm sure there's a lawyer out there salivating over the possibilities with your situation.
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Old 06-03-2011, 11:32 AM
Location: State of Jefferson coast
965 posts, read 2,613,079 times
Reputation: 1294
Absent a death-and-disability clause in the language of the lease itself, there isn't any provision of civil law that would give you hardship grounds for absolving you of your contractual obligations without penalty. Even if you died, your estate could be held liable for paying out the remainder of your lease.

The best hope is to try and negotiate with the landlord. Don't make any demands, and expect to pay a penalty of some sort. Explain the situation and ask what the penalty would be for an early termination with a 30-day notice. How many months remain on your current lease?
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Old 06-03-2011, 12:40 PM
1,359 posts, read 4,369,315 times
Reputation: 770
Maybe try to find a new tenant for them, I think that is usually how it works when a tenant needs to break a lease.
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Old 06-03-2011, 10:46 PM
Location: San Jose, CA
7,688 posts, read 25,615,123 times
Reputation: 3558
My suggestion is to first ask for accommodation. Maybe they have a building with ramps and elevators in another part of town where they can move you. If they cannot accommodate you, then get in touch with a lawyer. You don't want armchair advice here - the ADA is a very complicated issue and you need an expert to understand your rights.
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Old 06-04-2011, 10:31 AM
168 posts, read 520,653 times
Reputation: 105
You might find something here... Disability Laws and Regulations | California Disability Access Information

You might also contact the city hall in the town you live in and ask if they have any info for your city/county as far as accomadations for persons with disabilities in leased housing.
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Old 06-04-2011, 11:15 AM
26,579 posts, read 52,064,513 times
Reputation: 20358
I tend to look at the big picture...

My guess is your lease will be up for renewal in a few months and then the ball is in your court.

There is a lot of misunderstanding as to ADA... I'm not a lawyer and no expert by any means... I have had several tenants that requested ADA accommodations... some were very simple... adding a handrail or changing faucet handles which I gladly undertook.

Others wanted me to widen doorways and build ramps at single family homes or install barrier free showers...

My response was they could have these modification made, using licensed contractors with city permits at their expense and I reserve the right to return the premise to pre-modification status at their expense...

Most had no idea the true cost and time involved...

The one person that was wheel chair bound as a result of being hit by a drunk driver was given the option to move without penalty with no notice necessary...

It would seem a person that now requires an Elevator as the only means to access their home would have reasonable grounds to ask for consideration if said elevator has been out of service for "X" number of days...

Good luck...
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