Toxic Mold and Tenant Rights in Raleigh
All landlords in Raleigh and throughout the state have a duty to protect their tenants. This duty includes the responsibility to maintain their land in a manner that is safe for human habitation. This duty applies regardless of the presence of a lease or how old the property may be.
A failure to uphold this duty may cause significant legal troubles for a landlord and serious harm to a tenant. One major source of a failure to protect tenants is the growth of toxic mold. Toxic mold can cause serious health problems ranging from allergic reactions to respiratory infections. A landlord who fails to promptly correct a mold problem is responsible to compensate an injured resident.
It is vitally important that tenants understand the effects of toxic mold and tenant rights in Raleigh. This could help you to avoid predatory landlords and to stand up for your rights in court if mold does become an issue. Contact an experienced toxic mold attorney to learn more.
Toxic Mold as a Housing Hazard
Mold is one of the most common household hazards that may arise in Raleigh’s housing units. The area’s high humidity during the summer could allow moisture to penetrate a home’s walls and quickly spread. Mold will grow in any place where there is moisture and therefore may infest bathrooms, kitchens, attics, and basements.
Mold can have a serious effect on a person’s health. While many molds are benign, others can cause serious breathing problems in otherwise healthy people. The most virulent stains can cause respiratory infections that may inflict victims with permanent injuries. People who are harmed in this way have the right to demand compensation from negligent landowners.
Tenant Rights in Raleigh
All landlords in Raleigh must maintain their land in such a way as to make it safe for human use. This is known under the law as the implied warranty of habitability. According to North Carolina Statute §42-42, this includes an obligation to maintain the home as applied to any plumbing or drainage issues. Because these problems could quickly contribute to the growth of toxic mold, the presence of mold is certainly an indicator of landlord neglect.
Still, just because mold arises does not mean that a landlord carries legal liability. Tenants should immediately inform their landlord of the problem, preferably in writing. That landlord must then take appropriate steps to correct the problem including hiring a licensed mold professional. If this requires the tenant to temporarily leave the unit, the landlord should provide payment for a hotel room.
Failures to perform this duty could have serious consequences for a landlord. If a tenant becomes sick due to toxic mold, the landlord may be liable to pay for any medical bills or lost wages due to the injury. The mold may also destroy a tenant’s property. The landlord may be required to compensate a tenant for that property’s value. Finally, a landlord who continually fails to clean mold may allow a tenant to terminate their lease. A case in civil court could serve to protect a tenant’s rights and to allow them to collect compensation. For more information about toxic mold and a tenant’s rights in Raleigh, contact an attorney.
Understanding Toxic Mold and Tenant Rights in Raleigh is Key to Safe Living
The presence of toxic mold is a health hazard that no person should be made to endure. Still, the presence of mold in a home is not necessarily a cause for a lawsuit. All landlords have a legal obligation to provide a safe place to live. It is when a landlord knows about a mold problem and does nothing to fix it that a tenant may have cause to take a case to court.
An attorney could help answer your questions concerning toxic mold and tenant rights in Raleigh. If a landlord has violated the law, a lawyer could also help to defend your legal rights and even to demand appropriate compensation. Contact a lawyer today to learn more.