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Old 03-01-2010, 08:27 PM
 
2 posts, read 9,839 times
Reputation: 10

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My lease violates Sect 5-12-070 (no copy of ordinance summary re the interest on security deposit) and 5-12-080 of the CRLTO (no security deposit receipt).

I consulted 2 attorneys: they said they can terminate lease based on above. But I'd have to pay half month rent for their services. Being unemployed for over 6 months, I have a very tight budget. Is it legal for me to terminate the lease on my own, by writing to the landlord?

I already sent the landlord a 60 day termination notice by certified mail, but landlord refused to sign for it, so the letter was returned to me. Is email a legal way to notify landlord of termination?

I'd really appreciate hearing from anyone who has knowledge or experience with legal lease termination.

Thank you in advance for your time.
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Old 03-02-2010, 10:44 PM
 
Location: Ukranian Village, Chicago, Il
16 posts, read 38,501 times
Reputation: 13
try tenants.org
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Old 03-03-2010, 12:12 AM
 
760 posts, read 1,271,094 times
Reputation: 334
If my memory serves me well, a violation of the lease only invalidates that particular clause or section, it doesn't invalidate the entire lease. I think they owe you a months rent credit in this particular case, but you are not off the hook for the rest of the lease.
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Old 03-03-2010, 12:52 AM
 
Location: Lincoln Park
838 posts, read 3,096,109 times
Reputation: 172
Does your lease not say that you have paid security deposit in the amount of x dollars? would that be a receipt in a court of law?

Quote:
Originally Posted by solirs View Post
My lease violates Sect 5-12-070 (no copy of ordinance summary re the interest on security deposit) and 5-12-080 of the CRLTO (no security deposit receipt).

I consulted 2 attorneys: they said they can terminate lease based on above. But I'd have to pay half month rent for their services. Being unemployed for over 6 months, I have a very tight budget. Is it legal for me to terminate the lease on my own, by writing to the landlord?

I already sent the landlord a 60 day termination notice by certified mail, but landlord refused to sign for it, so the letter was returned to me. Is email a legal way to notify landlord of termination?

I'd really appreciate hearing from anyone who has knowledge or experience with legal lease termination.

Thank you in advance for your time.
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Old 03-10-2010, 08:51 PM
 
2 posts, read 9,839 times
Reputation: 10
Thank you very much to all of you who took the time to reply. I appreciate your feedback.

CRLTO actually states that violation of Sect 5-12-070 is cause for termination.

And Sect 5-12-080 is very specific about the receipt - though it does not invalidate the lease.

Thanks again.
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Old 03-12-2010, 11:41 AM
 
Location: University Village
440 posts, read 1,501,998 times
Reputation: 252
I had a tenant try to do that to me once.

Its an old, old trick. So old, in fact, that I am surprised your landlord fell for it. He must be new to this game.

The provision was not enacted to help people like you skip out on your obligations. It was put there because unscrupulous landlords were pocketing renter's security deposits. Because was nothing was in writing, when the **** hit the fan it was he said she said. And although terminating a lease sounds like the terrible swift sword of truth and justice, all it really does, in practical terms, is put you into a month-to-month lease.

Keep in mind that a cancelled check IS a receipt if it says "security deposit for blah blah blah" to the letter of the law. Similarly, a signed lease is a receipt if contains verbage to the effect that in signing it, the landlord acknowledges receipt of the security deposit. My leases always say that, which is why my yuppie tenants always ask me very nicely if they can get out when they need or want to.

Assuming you have reread your lease, rechecked the paper trail, and have served notice, you are now a month-to-month tenant. Your first order of business should be to read up on what your rights and obligations are. You are, for example, required to serve notice prior to vacating, continue to pay rent, keep up the apartment, etc.

My advice to you is don't trash the place, pay your rent until you leave, clean it when you do, and kiss your security deposit goodbye. Hopefully the landlord isn't a prick with too much time on his hands, because depending on your rent, when your lease terminates, and the condition you leave the apartment in, there could easily be enough money there to hire a lawyer to come after you. And make sure you meticulously document the condition of the apartment when you leave. Punch list, photos, cleaning lady receipts, EVERYTHING.
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Old 05-05-2010, 04:07 AM
 
1 posts, read 4,675 times
Reputation: 10
LET ME SHARE MY OPINION ON THE MATTER. THIS IS NOT LEGAL ADVICE.

"My lease violates Sect 5-12-070 (no copy of ordinance summary re the interest on security deposit) and 5-12-080 of the CRLTO (no security deposit receipt)."

I ASSUME YOU HAVE CHECKED SECTION 020 OF THE CRLTO TO MAKE SURE YOUR LEASE IS COVERED BY THE ORDINANCE?

UNDER SECTION 170, IF THE LANDLORD FAILED TO PROVIDE A WRITTEN COPY OF THE SUMMARY OF THE CRLTO AS WELL AS THE CURRENT INTEREST RATE SHEET (WHICH HAS THE CURRENT YEAR INTEREST RATE AND THE PREVIOUS TWO YEARS ), WHEN THE LEASE IS EXECUTED, THEN YOU MAY TERMINATE THE LEASE AT ANY TIME BY DELIVERING A WRITTEN NOTICE TO YOUR LANDLORD, INDICATING (1) THE DATE OF THE NOTICE, (2) THAT YOU INTEND TO TERMINATE THE LEASE, AND (3) THE DATE YOU INTEND TO TERMINATE THE LEASE (WHICH MUST BE WITHIN 30 DAYS OF THE DATE OF THE NOTICE).

ADDITIONALLY, IF THE LL VIOLATED 170, YOU MAY BE ENTITLED TO $100 PER VIOLATION (ALTHOUGH THE APPLICABLE STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS IS 2 YEARS, SO THE MOST YOU COULD PROBABLY GET IS $200).

THIS RIGHT OF TERMINATION IS A UNILATERAL RIGHT OF ONLY THE TENANT, WHICH MAY BE EXERCISED AT ANY TIME.


"I consulted 2 attorneys: they said they can terminate lease based on above. But I'd have to pay half month rent for their services. Being unemployed for over 6 months, I have a very tight budget. Is it legal for me to terminate the lease on my own, by writing to the landlord?"

OF COURSE IT IS LEGAL FOR YOU TO TERMINATE THE LEASE ON YOUR OWN. AS FOR ATTORNEY FEES, IF YOU WERE TO SUE IN COOK COUNTY FOR VIOLATIONS OF 170 AND 80 (DISCUSSED BELOW), YOUR ATTORNEYS FEES AND COURT COSTS COULD ADDITIONALLY BE COVERED PURSUANT TO SECTION 180 IF YOU ARE SUCCESSFUL. ALTHOUGH YOU MAY BE ABLE TO NAVIGATE THE PROCESS WITHOUT AN ATTORNEY, I WOULD RECOMMEND YOU LOOK INTO FINDING LEGAL REPRESENTATION AS THERE ARE SOME ATTORNEYS WHO WILL TAKE SUCH CASES ON A CONTINGENCY BASIS.

I already sent the landlord a 60 day termination notice by certified mail, but landlord refused to sign for it, so the letter was returned to me. Is email a legal way to notify landlord of termination?

IF YOU READ ABOVE, YOU WILL SEE THAT A 60 DAY NOTICE IS FAR TOO LONG TO TERMINATE PURSUANT TO 170. YOU MUST SEND THE NOTICE AND ACTUALLY TERMINATE THE LEASE WITHIN THE SAME 30 DAY PERIOD OF TIME. AS FOR THE QUESTION ON E-MAIL, ILLINOIS DOES NOT HAVE CASE LAW OR DIRECT STATUTORY AUTHORITY THAT ADDRESSES THE VALIDITY OF E-MAILED NOTICES FOR TERMINATING LEASES UNDER THE CRLTO. KEEP IN MIND YOU MAY HAND DELIVER, SERVE IT USING SOMEONE ELSE, FAX IT, HAVE THE SHERIFF SERVE IT, OR CERTIFIED OR EVEN REGULAR MAIL. THE SUGGESTION IS TO BE ABLE TO PROVE YOU DID SEND IT - MAKE COPIES, HAVE AN UNINTERESTED WITNESS SIGN A SEPARATE DOCUMENT AND HAVE IT NOTARIZED, OR BEST OF ALL, VIDEO TAPE THE SIGNING AND MAILING OF THE LETTER- SHOWING THAT THE ADDRESS WAS PROPER AND THAT YOU WALK IT TO THE MAIL BOX AND DEPOSIT IT. WITHOUT STATEMENTS, THAT WOULDN'T BE HEARSAY.

AS FOR THE 080 CLAIM, UNDER THAT SECTION, A VIOLATION CREATES A RIGHT TO RECEIVE TWO TIMES THE SECURITY DEPOSIT, PLUS THE SECURITY DEPOSIT PLUS REASONABLE ATTORNEYS FEES AND COURT COSTS. HOW DO YOU KNOW IF THE LL VIOLATED THE RECEIPT PROVISION? CHECK THE FOLLOWING:

Was a receipt given when it was furnished?
1. If no, there is a violation of 080. There is a also a right under 080b to get immediate return of the security deposit.
2. If so:
a. Was the receipt given at the time the check was given?
b. Did the receipt indicate the amount of security deposit?
c. Did it list the name of the person receiving it?
i. If it was an agent, did it also list the landlord’s name?
d. Did it list the date received?
e. Did it describe the dwelling unit?
3. If you answer no to any of these, Landlord violated 080(b).

I HOPE THIS ALL HELPS. REMEMBER, THIS IS NOT ADVICE, BUT JUST OPINION.
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Old 05-05-2010, 11:53 AM
 
45 posts, read 111,980 times
Reputation: 31
Why not try to sublet? Or even ask the landlord if you guys can work together to find a new tenant?
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Old 05-05-2010, 04:28 PM
 
Location: Cleveland, OH USA / formerly Chicago for 20 years
4,069 posts, read 7,312,310 times
Reputation: 3062
I personally would never initiate legal action against a landlord without utilizing the services of an attorney who specializes in Chicago Landlord-Tenant law. Although you as a tenant have plenty of rights and remedies if you are covered under the Chicago RLTO, the law is complicated enough that one procedural error on your part could end up nullifying your case should you have to go to court.

At least that's how I see it.
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Old 05-10-2012, 03:06 PM
 
3 posts, read 9,593 times
Reputation: 13
Default Lease Terminations under RLTO

The Chicago RLTO (local ordinance) does offer a couple ways a tenant can unilaterally beak the lease early, and legally. The RLTO does not require a tenant to use a lawyer. It just requires a violation, the proper timeline, and "written notice" at RLTO 5-12-170. But, as an earlier commenter pointed out, tenants might mistakenly rely on the RLTO when it does not apply, because it does not apply to every rental in Chicago. Also, sometimes tenants misunderstand the "not later than 30 days" language in Section 170 and give a notice specifying a date later than 30 days after the date of their written notice. We know of tenants who have terminated their leases properly, and legally, both with and without an attorney under the Chicago RLTO.
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