Woman Sues Landlord After Waking up to Rat on Her Chest

A 72-year-old woman is suing her West Side landlord for emotional and physical damages after she found a rodent crawling on her chest. The woman awoke suddenly when she felt and saw the rat, and she jumped off her bed in fear and fell. The fall caused the woman to seriously injure her knee, resulting in a ligament tear that required surgery. According to the lawsuit, the building the woman lives in is severely infested with rats, and management has ignored the problem for far too long. The woman’s lawsuit also claims that rats are constantly seen “scurrying about” and her stove was rendered useless due to rat droppings clogging the lines. Finally, the court papers state that the landlord was negligent because the apartment building was beset “with rodent infestation and openings/holes in the ceiling(s), wall(s) and floor(s).” Unfortunately, landlord negligence plagues far too many New York City dwellings. If you have been Injured by an incident of landlord negligence, you should immediately consult the experienced personal injury attorneys in Brooklyn or the Bronx for a free consultation to evaluate your case.

What is Landlord Negligence?

Landlords in New York have a legal duty to maintain safe living standards in multi-unit buildings. When landlord conduct falls below this duty and tenants are injured as a result of the conduct resulting in damages, those tenants may have an action to recover for their injuries.

New York multiple-dwelling laws were enacted to protect the safety of the City’s apartment residents. Nevertheless, many of the City’s landlords are ignoring the law and allowing the properties they own and/or manage to fall into serious disrepair. For this very reason, the New York City council has proposed a new bill to impose harsher penalties on affordable-housing managers and owners for repeated safety-violations like the one discussed above.

All landlords and property owners must follow all city and state laws and regulations in keeping their property safe for residents and their visitors in both the private and community areas. Common violations include (but are not limited to) the following:

· Faulty elevators;
· Wet spots;
· Holes in walls leading to vermin infestation;
· Faulty lighting;
· Sharp objects in hallways;
· Steam burns;
· Exposed wires;
· High water temperatures; and
· Broken locks.

When you are living on a property where the owner acted in a negligent manner with respect to an unsafe condition causing you to be injured, you may have recourse against the landlord for damages.

Why Should I Seek Legal help if I Am Injured as the Result of Negligent Behavior by My Landlord?

Landlord negligence cases involve complex legal issues and complicated sets of facts. When you contact the skilled New York premise liability lawyers at the Law Office of Jeffrey K. Kestenbaum at (718) 237-5586, you can be certain that Mr. Kestenbaum will advise you of all of the rights you may have with respect to your damages or injuries, including a civil personal injury lawsuit or contractual lawsuit for breach of lease agreement. We will ensure that you and your family will receive maximum compensation for pain and suffering, lost earnings, past and future medical bills, and other damages you may have incurred.

UPDATE 9/24/2015:

A spokesman for Beacon, the management firm that oversees the apartment complex where Cuevas’ lives, said in a statement to Westside Rag Magazine “It’s odd that this lawsuit, which has not been received by the owner, is being brought two years after the alleged incident. But in any event the building is regularly visited by an exterminator and there are no violations for infestation or anything else at this time. When and if it actually gets served, the company will respond in court.”