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Alexandra Tracy-Ramirez

Alexandra Tracy-Ramirez’s Answers

23 total

  • Does a lease become void if the landlord fails to make the unit livable?

    I signed a 12 month lease at an apartment complex and have now been harassed by two different men living in the same building. One of them brought a gun into my apartment and kept making sexual suggestions to me, the other kept knocking on my door...

    Alexandra’s Answer

    The short answer is that it is always possible to break a lease but whether or not a lease is considered "void" or voidable is a question that courts typically answer. If you break your lease, you may be subject to a lawsuit from the landlord in which you could raise any defenses that you might have. It's also possible that you could raise your concerns to the landlord in advance and that that would be enough to keep your landlord from pursuing claims against you. There's no guarantees, however it goes.

    The first step is checking your lease to see who is responsible for pest control services. Often leases say things like within the apartment it might be the tenant's responsibility but within the building it is the landlord's. You may want to review your lease to find out what yours says.

    Second, regardless of why you want to leave, the main question would be what you could be liable for after breaking the lease. The first step is to check the lease to see what provisions the lease makes for lease breaking. Sometimes it's a relatively small fee charged in exchange for breaking the lease without any additional consequences.

    It may be possible to negotiate with the landlord as well and help the landlord find a new tenant in exchange for getting out without problems.

    Here's a website compiled the University of Arizona's law college library staff. It contains quite a bit of information and some resources that might make the process easier and clearer.

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  • What's the most a landlord or owner can charge me for a rental application in Arizona?

    I don't want to overpay.

    Alexandra’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    There's no set maximum for application fees under the Arizona Residential Landlord Tenant Act. Normally, landlords are usually charging to run a credit check and background check. Some will charge $25, others will charge over $100. It ranges quite a bit. If a fee seems too high, you can always ask what it covers and decide whether or not to pay it.

    There are limits on what a landlord can charge for security deposits though. The security deposit should not be more than 1.5 times the monthly rent. Again, that doesn't cover deposits that are labeled cleaning deposit, or pet deposit. In theory, you could be asked to pay an application fee, a security deposit, and other things like pet deposits and cleaning deposits. Any fee or deposit you pay should be clearly labeled as to whether it's refundable or not. Then it's up to you to decide if it's worth paying or not.
    Good luck!

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  • Is child molestation legal if done by the parent (the child's owner)?

    Is child molestation legal if done by the parent (the child's owner)?

    Alexandra’s Answer

    Agreed with Mr. Chase's answer.
    Molestation of a child occurs when any "person" commits acts named in the statute.

    13-1410. Molestation of a child; classification

    A. A person commits molestation of a child by intentionally or knowingly engaging in or causing a person to engage in sexual contact...

    B. Molestation of a child is a class 2 felony that is punishable pursuant to section 13-705.

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  • What can I do in response to a series of frivolous injunctions filed against me?

    My neighbor has filed a serious of injunctions against me. When the injunction is dismissed by the court, he files another injunction against me. The judge keeps granting the injunctions. He filed one injunction and failed to appear in court,...

    Alexandra’s Answer

    There are things you can do, but none of them is necessarily quick or easy. There is a process for petitioning the court to stop accepting injunction applications, but those are hard to come by. There is also a cause of action for abuse of process which you could allege in a separate lawsuit against the person. The problem with all of these is that if there is even a small basis for granting the injunctions or any legitimate legal motive, it can be very difficult to succeed in claiming that the person is guilty of abuse of process, even if the person had mixed motives. Since the judge has granted the injunctions in some instances, it suggests that he thought there were enough grounds to grant them. It's not impossible to succeed, but you should be prepared to gather all evidence you can to support your argument that the person is engaging in improper conduct and abusing the legal system.

    The more documentation you can find, the stronger your claim will be.

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  • I moved out of a apartment 2 years ago and I am getting collection calls saying that i am being charged over $1000 for damages?

    they said that there was a hole in the wall and they had to replace carpet also said I had a water fee of $26 and past rent of $46. First off I do not remember a hole in the wall and we had the carpets cleaned before we left. I asked the debt agen...

    Alexandra’s Answer

    One of the main problems comes down to a definition of "validation." What we might think of as required to validate the debt (such as the photos and things you've asked for) is not what the debt collector is required to do.

    When you dispute, in writing, as the previous responder suggested, the debt collection company has an obligation to contact the original creditor and request validation. The original creditor has to do more than simply say, "It's a valid debt" but not a lot more. If the creditor can provide the debt collection company with notes or bills or a ledger or any other document that, if assumed to be true, would suggest you owe the debt, the debt collector will assume the debt is valid. It is not the responsibility of the debt collector to go to the apartment and inspect the walls and check for cleaning requirements, especially two years later.

    When you dispute to the debt collection company, dispute also to the original creditor (the landlord or property management company). You may also want to pull your credit reports from each credit bureau and check to see if this comes up as a collection item on your report. If it does, you'll want to dispute in writing (by mail or through the different bureau's websites) the item with all three different bureaus.

    Finally, you'll want to gather whatever evidence you have of the condition of the property when you moved out-- photos, any move-out inspection reports, things like that to prepare in the event of the debt collection company suing you.

    Hopefully the dispute process will be enough to get the debt collector to drop the collection, but if not, I'd recommend meeting with an attorney to discuss your options.

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  • I am renting a home in Arizona that I learned is being foreclosed on. How do I ensure that my deposit will be returned to me?

    The intend to sale date is two and a half months before my lease is up. If the house sells will I still be able to have my deposit returned to me? Are there steps I need to take to protect myself. How soon until I need to move? I am aware that ...

    Alexandra’s Answer

    The Security Deposit
    The security deposit is supposed to run with the house. So your current landlord should transfer the security deposit to the new owner of the house. That can get complicated if it ends up being a bank, rather than another human being, who buys the house.

    You may want to communicate with your landlords about the situation and talk about what is going to happen on their end. They may agree to let you out of your lease early if you want to move and be done with it. They may agree to inspect the place and give you back your deposit before the end of the lease or before the foreclosure. It's possible that they may not really understand what their obligations to you will be regarding the security deposit.

    If, after the expiration of your lease, you have made a demand for your security deposit and it hasn't been returned to you, you could sue the landlord on those grounds. But, it sounds at least possible that a conversation with your landlord might be able to keep all that from happening.

    Move-out
    In most cases, when you need to move will in part depend upon who buys the house at the foreclosure sale. If you have a "bona fide" lease (meaning you're not renting from a parent/relative or through some arrangement that makes your rent payments well-below fair market prices), then you can stay in the house until the end of your lease if it is a bank that buys back the house. If a human buys the house and intends to make that house their primary residence, that person has to give you 90 days notice before they can occupy it.

    So in your case, it sounds like either way, you will likely get to stay in the house until the end of your lease which you mentioned is 2.5 months after the sale.

    Best of luck.

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  • Information about my brother stealing my identity

    My brother has been using my identity when getting traffic violations in Arizona and other charges. I just found that there has been a warrant out for my arrest since 2006 in Ohio for an accident he had. I have never been to Ohio or Arizona befo...

    Alexandra’s Answer

    Unfortunately, it sounds like you really need to speak to an attorney. You may be able to qualify for free or low-cost legal aid and I'm attaching a link that you can click through for information.

    There are some steps you can take yourself, the first of which is filing a police report for identity theft. An attorney in your area could help you or can call or contact the non-emergency line for information. The police report, which you affirm is true and accurate to the best of your knowledge, will help you document your case. It is something you can send to Arizona or Ohio courts and agencies with an explanation that you have been the victim of identity theft.

    You may want to file formal disputes with the credit bureaus. The first step in filing a dispute is to pull your credit report with each agency. You are entitled to one free report (without a score) from each agency once a year. Once you get your report, look for any charges or items that you are not responsible for and follow the company's dispute directions. Again, this will help document your situation and reduce the chances of you getting in trouble for things you have not done.

    Good luck.

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  • My main home's foreclosure will be final in the next few months. What can i do to make sure that I receive a 1099c in 2012?

    IF I don't receive it in 2012 can I file amended tax returns for 2012 when I do get it in the future? This is important as the Tax Relief program ends Dec 12, 2012!

    Alexandra’s Answer

    You will only get a 1099 for 2012 purposes if the house is actually sold within this calendar year. So for instance even if the house is sold December 30, 2012, you will get your 1099 the following January and be able to file the form 982 to help mitigate your tax liability. So your best bet is to make sure that you do not do anything to delay the foreclosure proceedings and to see what you can do to keep it moving smoothly along.

    If possible, contact your lender to discuss the options for a short-sale or deed-in-lieu of foreclosure. Normally, short sales only benefit the real estate agents who get commissions from the sales, but it could help you make sure the house is sold during 2012.

    If you are already involved in the judicial process of foreclosure, I would seek the advice of an attorney located in your state to negotiate with counsel for the lenders to see what options the lender is willing to consider to speed up the process.

    I am not a tax attorney or professional and can't speak to amendments on tax returns.

    Best of luck.

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  • Can i break lease when my house has been robbed?

    My daughter's rental house in AZ broken into. Her husband is currently serving a 4 month stint for DUI. It's her and baby. She doesn't feel safe even if the landlord changes the locks. She fears for her and son's life.

    Alexandra’s Answer

    To echo what the other responders said, it is possible for your daughter to break her lease. The only question is what she could be liable for after she breaks the lease. The first step is to check the lease to see what provisions the lease makes for lease breaking.

    Sometimes it's a relatively small fee charged in exchange for breaking the lease without any additional consequences.
    It's always possible to negotiate with the landlord as well and help the landlord find a new tenant in exchange for getting out without problems.

    If she truly fears for her life, it sounds like there's no question that she should do whatever she feels necessary to protect herself and her son.
    Here's a website compiled the University of Arizona's law college library staff. It contains quite a bit of information and some resources that might make the process easier and clearer.

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