Sec. 42-806 - Tenant Remedies

 

A. Tenant remedy of withholding rent. If the landlord is not in material compliance with the rental agreement or with section 42-805, the tenant may deliver a written notice to the landlord specifying the items of material noncompliance. The tenant may deliver this written notice at any time of month. The written notice shall indicate that the tenant will withhold rent on the next rent payment date if the landlord has not remedied the material noncompliance within 14 days after receipt of written notice. The tenant may withhold an amount of rent that reasonably reflects the reduced value of the premises. The tenant may not withhold for a condition caused by the deliberate or negligent act or omission of the tenant, a member of the tenant’s family, or other person on the premises with the tenant’s consent.

 

B. Tenant remedy of terminating lease.

 

1. If the landlord is not in material compliance with the rental agreement or with section 42-805, the tenant may deliver a written notice to the landlord specifying the items of material noncompliance. The tenant may deliver this written notice at any time of month. The written notice shall indicate that the tenant will terminate the rental agreement and vacate the property if the landlord has not remedied the material noncompliance within 14 days after receipt of written notice. The tenant may not terminate for a condition caused by the deliberate or negligent act or omission of the tenant, a member of the tenant’s family, or other person on the premises with the tenant’s consent. If the tenant does not vacate the property within one (1) month after the expiration of the 14 day period or the end of the next rental period, whichever is longer, then the tenant’s written notice shall be deemed withdrawn and the rental agreement shall remain in full force and effect. If the rental agreement is terminated, the landlord shall return the security deposit immediately upon the tenant tendering possession.

 

C. Tenant remedy of right to file affirmative action.

 

1. If the landlord is not in material compliance with the rental agreement or with section 42-805, the tenant may recover damages and obtain injunctive relief for any material noncompliance by the landlord with the rental agreement or with section 42-805. The landlord shall have an affirmative defense to this action that the condition was caused by a deliberate or negligent act or omission of the tenant, a member of the tenant’s family, or other person on the premises with the tenant’s consent.

 

D. Tenant remedy for denial of essential services.

 

1. If the landlord fails to supply heat, running water, hot water, electricity, gas, or plumbing that the rental agreement requires the landlord to provide, or internet access if the rental agreement requires the landlord to provide, the tenant shall deliver a written notice to the landlord specifying the service to be restored. If the landlord fails to correct the condition within 24 hours after being notified by the tenant, the tenant may:

 

a. Withhold from the monthly rent an amount that reasonably reflects the reduced value of the premises due to the material noncompliance or failure; or

 

b. Procure reasonable amounts of heat, running water, hot water, electricity, gas or plumbing service and, upon presentation to the landlord of paid receipts, deduct the cost from their rent; or

 

c. Recover damages based upon the diminution in the fair rental value of the dwelling unit and reasonable attorney fees; or

 

d. Procure substitute housing, in which case the tenant is excused from paying rent for the period of noncompliance. The tenant may recover the cost of reasonable value of the substitute housing up to an amount equal to the monthly rent and reasonable fees.

 

2. In addition, the tenant may terminate the rental agreement by written notice to the landlord if the landlord fails to supply heat, running water, hot water, electricity, gas, or plumbing that the rental agreement requires the landlord to provide, or internet access if the rental agreement requires the landlord to provide, for more than 72 hours after the tenant has notified the landlord. If the rental agreement is terminated, the landlord shall return all security deposits thereon and the tenant shall deliver possession of the dwelling unit to the landlord within 30 days after the expiration of the 72 hour time period specified in the written notice or the end of the next rental period, whichever is longer. The landlord shall return the security deposit immediately upon the tenant delivering possession. If the tenant does not vacate the property within 30 days after the notification of termination or the end of the next rental period, whichever is longer, then the tenant’s written notice shall be deemed withdrawn and the rental agreement shall remain in full force and effect.

 

3. The tenant may not exercise their rights under section 42-806(D) if the condition was caused by the inability of a utility supplier, or internet provider to provide service, unless the landlord caused the inability of the utility supplier, or by the deliberate or negligent act or omission of the tenant, a member of the tenant’s family, or other person on the premises with the tenant’s consent.

 

E. Tenant remedies in the event of fire or casualty.

 

1. If the dwelling unit or premises are damaged or destroyed by fire or casualty to an extent that the dwelling unit is in material noncompliance with the rental agreement or with section 42-805(C), the tenant may immediately vacate the premises and notify the landlord in writing within 14 days thereafter of the tenant’s intention to terminate the rental agreement, in which case the rental agreement terminates as of the date of fire or casualty.

 

2. If continued occupancy is lawful, the tenant may vacate any part of the dwelling unit rendered unusable by the fire or casualty, in which case the tenant’s liability for rent is reduced in proportion to the diminution in the fair rental value of the dwelling unit.

 

3. If the tenant desires to continue the tenancy and if the landlord has promised or begun work to repair the damage or destruction but fails to carry out the work to restore the 13 dwelling unit or common area diligently and within a reasonable time, the tenant may notify the landlord in writing within 14 days after the tenant becomes aware that work is not being carried out diligently, or within a reasonable time of the tenant’s intention to terminate the rental agreement, in which case the rental agreement terminates as of the date of the fire or casualty.

 

4. If the rental agreement is terminated, the landlord shall return all security deposit within 48 hours. When the landlord accounts for rent after the tenant has terminated the rental agreement, the landlord shall not charge rent to the tenant for any date after the date of the fire or casualty.

 

5. A tenant may not exercise remedies in this section if the fire or casualty damage was caused by the deliberate or negligent act or omission of the tenant, a member of the tenant’s family or a person on the premises with the tenant’s consent.

 

F. Tenant remedy of withholding rent to undertake minor repairs.

1. If the landlord is not in material compliance with the rental agreement or with section 42-805 and the reasonable cost of compliance does not exceed $500.00 or one-half month’s rent, whichever amount is greater, the tenant may notify the landlord in writing that, if the landlord does not remedy the condition within 14 days of receipt of the written notice or as promptly as conditions require in case of emergency, the tenant will correct the condition and withhold the cost of the repair from the tenant’s next rent payment. The tenant shall have work done in a worker-like manner. The tenant shall submit to the landlord a paid bill from an appropriate trades-person or supplier at the same time as deducting the amount from their rent. The tenant may not expend or deduct more than the amount specified in this section.

 

2. A tenant shall not repair at the landlord’s expense or deduct rent if the condition was caused by the deliberate or negligent act or omission of the tenant, a member of the tenant’s family, or other person on the premises with the tenant’s permission.

 

3. Before correcting a condition affecting facilities shared by more than one dwelling unit, the tenant shall notify all other affected tenants of their plans and so arrange the work as to create the least practicable inconvenience to the other tenants.

42-806(A) and (B) look nice if you're a tenant but make sure you do not attempt to withhold any rent or terminate your lease based on problems at the property without religiously following the notice and cure-period rules set forth here.  The Appellate Court may require the   

42-806(C)(1) looks the same as Chicago's RLTO 5-12-110(e), which the Illinois Supreme Court already found to not create a private cause of action. Abbasi v. Paraskevoulakos, 187 Ill. 2d 386, 397 (1999).  

42-806(D)(1) says if your lease includes internet as part of your monthly payment, that is an "essential service" and you will have the same rights as if the water gets shut off.  

What if the place floods out or burns down?