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Tara Renee Burd

Tara Burd’s Answers

15 total


  • The apartments where i live was recently sold and the new owners are trying to raise the rent but i have lease already.

    the apartments where i rent was recently sold and the new owners are raising the rent and are trying to get all of us tenants to sign new leases when we already have leases from the previous owner. i would appreciate any info you have on this matt...

    Tara’s Answer

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    My colleagues are correct. Ultimately, your issue comes down to the terms of your lease. If you're in a fixed term, it is less likely the new landlord will be able to increase your rent. However, at the expiration of a fixed term, many leases allow landlords to raise the rent as long as the landlord provides adequate notice to the tenant (such as 60 days notice).

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  • What to expect from Unjust Enrichment defense?

    One of my affirmative defenses against debt collector includes Unjust Enrichment. So, if debt collector bought debt for 5 cents on the dollar, and judgement goes to plaintiff. 1- Will judge award plaintiff more than that 5 cents on the dollar?...

    Tara’s Answer

    Your affirmative defenses have nothing to do with what a judge ultimately awards. Affirmative defenses raise issues that are not otherwise raised by the complaint but that, if proven by the Defendant, can reduce Plaintiff's award (such as an off-set) or tip the results in Defendant's favor. Interest and attorneys fees are also completely separate issues. Attorneys fees may be awarded only if they are included in a contract on a breach of contract claim, or exist by statute. Without reading the Complaint it is impossible to determine whether attorneys fees may be awarded. It has nothing, however, to do with your affirmative defense.

    Unjust enrichment is an equitable remedy. As a defense, it merely says that it would be unfair for the Defendant to pay Plaintiff for some reason (depending on the facts and circumstances of the case) even if Plaintiff has a valid claim under the complaint.

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  • What legal recourse do I have against my landlord? Month to month rental agreement.

    Two weeks ago I informed my landlord that one of the roommates in the house I rent in was smoking marijuana and crack cocaine and made my entire room smell of drugs while I was hosting a weekly bible study.I told him I feel unsafe having this pers...

    Tara’s Answer

    Marijuana and crack cocaine are treated very differently under the law, including landlord-tenant law. Crack cocaine is an illegal drug which means the other tenant is breaking the law. In contrast, possession of marijuana in relatively small amounts is merely an infraction similar to a traffic ticket. The landlord probably has a right to divulge the information to the other tenant since he was, in theory, warning him to correct his behavior in order to protect your right to "quiet enjoyment." Whether and how your landlord has the right to evict you depends on the type of tenancy you have: month-to-month or term. It is far more difficult for a landlord to evict you if you signed a lease for a certain term. If it is month-to-month it is much easier, so long as the landlord follows the proper procedure and provides you with the proper amount of notice, as required by law. Ultimately, however, I agree with the previous attorney -- if this is not the type of environment you want to be living in, you should be the one to leave. Illegal drug use by other tenants is strong evidence that your right to quiet enjoyment has been violated and even breaching a term tenancy agreement is likely justified under those circumstances.

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  • A contractor I referred to my customer verbally agreed to pay me when work was done and did not. Can I collect in Small Claims?

    I work with homeowners doing energy audits and we often times have jobs that require an approved contractor so we refer the work to these contractors after interviewing them and getting buy off on the terms. This is typically we do any HERS I Com...

    Tara’s Answer

    I agree with the other attorney that a mechanic's lien may be available. I also recommend drafting a written agreement to use in the future. There is no sense continuing to make verbal agreements which are often ambiguous if this is a regular course of business. Also be mindful of the statute of limitation for an oral contract which is generally two years. (California Code of Civil Procedure Section 339.) This means that you must bring your claim within two years of the breach.

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  • I financed a vehicle for my ex & he has been late on payments, we have a notarized agreement that he's defaulting. what can i do

    I have a notarized agreement that states he is responsible for the payment, insurance,registration, maintenance & upkeep of the vehicle as well as any tickets that may arise. It states that if he defaults on any of these he is subject to suit & li...

    Tara’s Answer

    Although I cannot give you legal advice, I agree with the other attorneys, that you may want to immediately sell the vehicle in order to mitigate any further loss to yourself. However, it sounds like you also have a contract with your ex to pay you. Even if you sell the car, he is still liable to you for any damages based upon that contract. If damages are not too high, I would suggest considering small claims court against your Ex. In small claims, you do not need to hire an attorney and the cost to bring the suit is minimal. Even if your ex does not have the money to pay you right now, a successful judgment against him would be good for ten years and is renewable. If you decide your damages are significant enough to bring suit against the Ex, do not delay in bringing the action because you must file suit within the time frame defined by the applicable statute of limitation. An action for a breach of written contract is 4 years. (California Code of Civil Procedure Section 337).

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