Client's Choice Awards 2017
Colorado Criminal Defense Bar
Avvo Rating badge
Denver Bar Association
Client's Choice 2014
The American Trial Lawyers Association
American Bar Association
Colorado Bar Association

Understanding Landlord Liability: A Criminal Acts & Activities FAQ

At The Law Office of Monte J. Robbins, Esq., we understand that landlord responsibilities extend beyond just collecting rent. Landlords must also safeguard the well-being of their tenants. On this page, we address frequently asked questions related to landlord liability in the face of criminal acts and activities that could occur on their property.

What Are the Legal Obligations of a Landlord Concerning the Safety and Security of Tenants?

By state and local laws, landlords are tasked with measures to shield their residents from potential assailants, burglaries, and unlawful behaviors from other dwellers. This duty is derived from various sources including municipal ordinances, building codes, statutory provisions, and prior court rulings. Responsibility also involves ensuring that any illegal conduct by tenants, such as drug trafficking, does not negatively impact the surrounding community.

Negligence or failure in these domains could lead to legal actions with financial consequences, as cases of tenant injury by criminal activities have led to settlements and jury awards often ranging from $100,000 to $1 million. Liability is particularly heightened if a similar crime has previously occurred on the premises.

Back to Top

How Can Landlords Reduce Their Liability for Crimes Committed on Rental Property by Outsiders?

To both decrease crime risk and minimize liability in the event of a criminal incident, landlords are advised to:

  • Meet or surpass all local and state security regulations pertinent to rental housing.
  • Evaluate local crime rates realistically and implement a security system offering reasonable protection for tenants.
  • Inform tenants about local crime challenges while acknowledging the boundaries of security measures in place.
  • Regularly maintain the property and inspect for any potential security flaws.
  • Promptly address tenant concerns regarding security threats or suspicious activities.
  • If needed, advise tenants of potential rent increases due to added security measures, as many tenants may agree to higher rents for improved safety.

Investing in these preventative measures can be far less costly than dealing with the aftermath of a crime on your property.

Back to Top

What Should a Landlord Do To Protect Tenants From Potential Misconduct by a Property Manager?

Landlords should rigorously vet a property manager's background and supervise their job performance closely since they have regular tenant contact and access to master keys. If tenants report improper or unlawful actions by a manager, these claims must be taken seriously. Furthermore, landlords should ensure their insurance policy covers illicit activities by their employees.

Back to Top

What Are the Potential Legal Repercussions for Landlords if Tenants Are Found Dealing Drugs on Their Property?

Landlords face both legal and practical dilemmas when their property is involved with drug-related activities:

  • They may be sued by individuals harmed or disturbed by drug trafficking under public nuisance laws.
  • Authorities may impose significant fines for continued illegal activities or even pursue criminal charges against the landlord.
  • In severe cases, law enforcement could seize the rental property.
  • The presence of drug dealers can lead to tenant turnover, difficulty in attracting new renters, and a drop in property value.

Back to Top

How Can Landlords Protect Themselves From Liability Linked to Tenants Engaged in Illegal Activities?

To minimize liability and prevent complications linked to criminal tenant behavior, landlords should:

  • Conduct thorough tenant screenings to ensure responsible and law-abiding renters.
  • Avoid cash rental payments.
  • Enforce lease provisions strictly prohibiting illegal activities, including drug dealing.
  • Stay vigilant about unusual activities on the premises.
  • Respond promptly to complaints regarding illegal behavior and seek police guidance when needed.
  • Take advantage of security professionals' expertise to detect and avert unlawful actions on the property.

At The Law Office of Monte J. Robbins, Esq., we strive to keep landlords informed and compliant with their legal obligations. For more detailed guidance tailored to your specific circumstances, contact us at 303-355-5148. Your security as a landlord is our priority.

Back to Top

Client Reviews
"An excellent lawyer choice for my son who was charged with driving while his license was revoked. DMV had mistakenly sent (3) letters of revocation to the incorrect address, so I hired Monty to prove that my son never knew his license was revoked. Monty kept me informed at all times as to what was happening and what he doing to prove my son's innocence in this matter. We were to appear in court on 29 March 2012 and Monte informed us on 27 March 2012, that the case had been dismissed!!! Monte charged a fair, flat rate for what he did in this matter and should the need arise to hire a lawyer or to recommend a lawyer, I would not hesitate to give Monte's name.” Linda
"I consulted three other attorneys on my traffic offense in Colorado and none of them thought I could beat it. Then I consulted with Monte Robbins. He not only relieved my warrant without my presence in Colorado, but he got my habitual driving offense reduced to an infraction. I was up against the wall on this case but thanks to Monte miracles are possible. I have hired my share of attorneys and Monte Robbins has produced the best results for me yet. After being without my driving privileges for ten years I paid a small fine and am legal with a clean record. I Highly recommend this attorney." Steve
"I hired Monte J. Robbins to represent me. He gave 110% to my case never rushed me off the phone, quick to gather all information regarding my case. Monte is very knowledgeable and helped me out a lot. He kept me informed every step of the way through my case. I was always able to get a hold of him for any questions i had. The outcome of my case was way better then i had expected. Monte did a excellent job on my case and I would highly recommend him to anyone. Monte won my case and I am confident that he can do the same for anyone else." Jeremy