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  1. #1

    Default Landlord Broke in While Moving Out, Stole Property, Released Pet into the Wild

    My question involves landlord-tenant law in the State of: OH

    We gave a 30 day notice, paid our rent until the 30th of the month (end of month). We were gradually moving out, because I have an Illness which makes it very difficult to cope with high stress situations. The bulk of our belongings were out by the 4th of the month, but many items and a live reptile (who we visited and fed daily) were still there.
    We came back the 5th and 6th to feed the reptile. The 8th we returned to find all of our things were gone, including our pet. And all of the carpets had been ripped up.

    We were told we had abandoned our apartment, that our things were in the trash, and that our non indigenous reptile had been released into a ditch in the wild.

    I have no idea what sort of recourse to take, or even what exactly the law states in instances like this. I am devastated by the loss of my beloved pet and so confused and scared. Please help me.

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    9,096

    Default Re: Landlord Broke in While Moving Out, Stole Property, Released Pet into the Wild

    You sue your landlord in court for the value of the items you have lost and your pet.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Toledo, OH
    Posts
    16,307

    Default Re: Landlord Broke in While Moving Out, Stole Property, Released Pet into the Wild

    Concur with Cyjeff. Take your landlord to court, post haste. The apartment was yours until the 30th of the month, the landlord had no business in there without notifying you 24 hours in advance until then.

    Moving out gradually is not abandoning your apartment. Neither is being away for 3 days.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    98,846

    Default Re: Landlord Broke in While Moving Out, Stole Property, Released Pet into the Wild

    From a tenant's perspective, Ohio has relatively weak (or perhaps the word is 'undeveloped') landlord-tenant statutes. If you can be deemed to have abandoned your unit, even if your belongings remain in it and rent is paid, the landlord can move you out. Should this end up in court I expect that your landlord will argue that under the circumstances you had abandoned the premises such that he was legally entitled to retake possession. If that happens you will, of course, argue that your rent was paid, you retained your keys, you had property in the premises, utilities were paid, etc., to try to convince a court that your landlord's claim of abandonment is not reasonable.

    There may be language in your lease about what acts constitute abandonment and what your landlord can do with any property left in the premises after abandonment - so you need to check the lease.

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