Houston Business Litigation, Consumer Debt, and Real Estate Attorney
Call Today: (832) 305-7694
7457 Harwin Dr., Suite 345
Houston, Texas 77036
 
Within two days of the flood, I received multiple emails for help. One person said, “My rent house was completely flooded, and my landlord kicked me out. I have no place to go.”

Whether you are a Landlord or a Tenant, you have certain rights and obligations with a rent house after a natural disaster. For a quick review of your rights, read your written lease. You may also want to speak with a professional who practices Landlord/Tenant Law. For a free consultation, call (832) 305-7694.

How long does a Landlord have before repairs must be completed?

Do you have the right to terminate your Lease?

Can a renter withhold rent while repairs are pending?

What must a landlord do if a residential rental unit is uninhabitable?

Can hotel and food costs be refunded?

Don’t act without knowing the answers to your specific questions. Many answers are fact specific to your situation and to your lease. Don’t risk making yourself a target for an Eviction or a Repair & Remedy lawsuit.

 
 
In the market for a car or your first home? Do you know what's on your credit report?

You may find that your report is full of old claims, lost credit cards, or worse, accounts opened by identity thieves. Your credit report is your responsibility. Not only should you be familiar with what's on your credit report, it's up to you to make sure that anything that doesn't belong there is promptly removed.

There are three credit reporting agencies: Transunion, Equifax, and Experian. If your report reflects old or inaccurate information, you should contact the creditor and all three credit reporting agencies to make sure that your credit report is up-to-date.

Your credit score is important. Make sure you treat it that way. For information on obtaining a free credit report visit:

https://www.annualcreditreport.com

or call (877) 322-8228.
 

 
 
The short answer is "Yes."

State law allows a Home Owner's Association (or HOA) to sue you in state court to recover unpaid assessments. Additionally, you might be on the hook for late fees, interest, and various legal costs. A seemingly small yearly or monthly fee can quickly snowball into large sums of debt that an HOA can demand in court. If the debt remains unpaid, the HOA can eventually foreclose, and your home could belong to them.

That means that you may be perfectly up-to-date with your mortgage but a few hundred dollars behind with HOA assessments and lose your home. Don't get caught in an avalanche of debt. If you have been sued by an HOA for unpaid assessments or other violation of your deed covenants, give us a call before a court signs a judgment and you lose much more than you bargained for.

A lawsuit against you is not the end of the world, but it does mean that you have a limited amount of time to act. We have settled many of these types of lawsuits and usually find a way to keep home owners right where they belong. 
 
 
We see it almost every day: the number 1 mistake that tenants make when dealing with their landlords, property managers, and apartment complexes. We talk to tenants who are frustrated and angry about the lack of attention they’ve received regarding requests for repairs. So do they have any grounds to withhold rent? Any grounds for legal action? Unfortunately the typical answer is “no” – and it all comes down to the lease that you have signed.

The number one mistake that tenants make when making a repair request is HOW they make their request.  Tenants are often given a phone number to request all repairs.  But your lease probably requires your request to be made in writing.

But what if your apartment manager asked you to text? It doesn’t matter. What if your apartment complex has an online portal to submit requests for convenience? It doesn’t matter. You can use those things in tandem with your written notice. And be sure to keep a dated copy for yourself as proof that you’ve sent the notice.

So, are your repair requests guaranteed from there? Not quite. If you owe any amount of money in rent or fees, your landlord may be able to refuse your repair request. 

So what can I do to stand on my rights?  You’ve just asked a huge question.  Fortunately, we have the answers.  Don’t just put up with that broken sink!  Give us a call for a free confidential consultation to make sure that you are getting the most out of your lease.  

Legal Disclaimer

This blog site provides only general information about the law and does not, under any circumstances, constitute legal advice. You should not act or refrain from acting based on these materials without first obtaining the advice of professional legal counsel.


 
 
The court is only allowed to give you 5 days after an eviction.  After 5 days, the landlord will have the right to obtain a Writ of Possession.  That grants the constables the authority to come to your residence, force you and all other occupants out, seize all of you personal property, and then auction that property for the benefit of your landlord.  

Don't let this happen.  You can either move out, or you can appeal.  To appeal, you'll have three options.

1.  Cash Bond.  You pay an amount set by the court, pay filing fees, and wait for the county to send notice of the new trial setting;

2.  Surety Bond.  You and another resident (who does not live with you) of Harris County swear to be bound to the judgment on appeal.  You  
pay filing fees and wait for the county to send notice of the new trial setting;

3.  Affidavit of Inability to Pay.  You file a sworn affidavit with the Court which explains why you are unable to pay the Cash Bond.  However, within five days, you must pay one month's rent into the Court's registry (and every future month until your appeal is heard).  If the Court accepts your affidavit, you pay no filing fees and wait for the county to send notice of the new trial setting.

While filing the appeal may give you additional time, it does nothing to remove the judgment from your record.  Talk to an attorney about how a negotiated settlement can help you move into your new home within a comfortable time frame and without the harm that comes from a judgment for eviction on your record.  

Legal Disclaimer

This blog site provides only general information about the law and does not, under any circumstances, constitute legal advice. You should not act or refrain from acting based on these materials without first obtaining the advice of professional legal counsel.

 
 
In 1999 Napster was created and the craze to download music started. Since that time numerous other sites have sprung into action allowing users to download and share music files. The Recording Industry of America took action and began suing those that illegally downloaded music files associating the act to that of theft of a CD. However, today there are numerous sites, like iTunes, that allow legal downloads of songs. These sites are created to allow the ease of downloading music with the rightful payment to the artists.

So, what if you’re downloading from a site that does not charge to acquire that song? Chances are you’re illegally downloading music and the penalties are severe. Making unauthorized copies of copyrighted music recordings is against the law and may subject you to civil and criminal liability. A civil law suit could hold you responsible for thousands of dollars in damages. Criminal charges may leave you with a felony record, accompanied by up to five years of jail time and fines up to $250,000. So, be safe when you’re downloading music. If you have to question whether your download is legal then it’s probably not.

Legal Disclaimer

This blog site provides only general information about the law and does not, under any circumstances, constitute legal advice. You should not act or refrain from acting based on these materials without first obtaining the advice of professional legal counsel.


 
 
The short answer is usually, “No,” but it’s not always the answer.  Let’s first assume that the judgment has nothing to do with your house at all (eviction, foreclosure, or some criminal activity…).  What happens when a court grants someone a judgment against you, and you own a home?

Generally, your homestead is protected.  Other land, whether improved or not, would likely NOT be protected.  Well then, what could happen?

If you are lucky, nothing, but anyone with access to puclic records can determine whether or not land is titled in your name.  If that is the case, a Judgment Creditor can file for a Writ of Execution on any property owned by a Judgment Debtor.  The county will allow the Judgment Creditor to sieze the property, sell the property, and recover for the judgment, including any fees involved in such recovery.

In a nutshell, if you own multiple pieces of property and you have a judgment against you, the place you call home is generally safe, but the place you call passive income may not be called that for long (at least not by you).

If you have a judgment against you or are currently involved in civil litigation, consult an attorney with your questions.  Waiting around may cost you more than you bargained for.

Legal Disclaimer

This blog site provides only general information about the law and does not, under any circumstances, constitute legal advice. You should not act or refrain from acting based on these materials without first obtaining the advice of professional legal counsel.

 

Houston Business Litigation, Consumer Debt, and Real Estate Attorney