Landlord Tenant Law
Our firm is experienced in helping tenant's assert their rights and navigate complex landlord-tenant matters.
Five questions to consider if you've been served with an eviction.
If you have been served an eviction notice, you will need to consider the following:
(1) Why are you being evicted?
(2) Is the landlord's reason true? Is there evidence to support it?
(3) Did the landlord follow proper procedures?
(4) Were you given notice and proper service?
(5) What defenses can you raise? (Refusal of Rent, Retaliation, Prior Agreement)
If you have been served with an eviction notice, it is important to review the dispossessory affidavit quickly and respond within 7 days. In the answer, the tenant should write out any defenses to the eviction and write-out any counterclaims that you may have (e.g. failure to repair, personal injuries, alternative housing expenses). It is important to be comprehensive in your response to preserve your claims.
The Atlanta Metro area is one of the fastest growing cities, and it's growth rate is out-pacing affordable housing. As a result, many families have been forced into sub-standard housing conditions including leaks, mold, infestations, and other health compromising issues. It is illegal for landlords to allow tenants to remain in such conditions after receiving notice of the issue(s). Some conditions that violate Georgia’s repair statute include:
Infestations (Rats, Roaches, Squirrels, Bed Bugs)
If your landlord has refused to make repairs that affect the safety and habitability of the unit, you may be entitled to damages for:
Personal Property Damages
Alternative Housing Costs (i.e. hotel costs, Airbnb)
Other Damages Related to Disrepair of the Unit
What is an illegal eviction?
In Georgia, landlords have to go through the court process and obtain a court order called a Writ of Possession in order to evict a tenant from an apartment or home. If a landlord tries to evict a tenant without a court order, it is considered an illegal eviction. It is illegal for a landlord to:
(1) remove a tenant's items from the residence without following the proper legal procedures
(2) change a tenant's unit locks
(3) turn off a tenant's utilities
If you've been illegally evicted, you may be entitled to damages for your lost personal property, pain and suffering, attorney’s fees, and costs. If a Court finds that a landlord purposefully disconnected a tenant’s utilities, the landlord may be assessed a fine of up to $500.
In Georgia, it is illegal for a landlord to retaliate against a tenant for seeking repairs or making a code enforcement complaint about poor living conditions. Illegal retaliation can manifest in a variety of ways including:
eliminating a tenant’s access to amenities on the property (pool, gym)
increasing rental rate of a unit
filing an eviction (dispossessory action)
interfering with any rights that the tenant is entitled to, pursuant to the lease agreement
If the landlord retaliates after the tenant seeks help relating to a life, health, safety, or habitability concern in the home, a tenant may be entitled to one month’s rent + $500, court costs, and reasonable attorney’s fees for a landlord’s intentional retaliatory behaviors.