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Abandoned property laws and Landlord interference?

Bend, OR |

My old landlord mailed an abandoned property notice to our old rental address but asked on the envelope for return service and once the envelope reached the rental she had it returned to sender. All other pieces of mail have been received at our new address by means of "forward" except for this one from the landlord because she redirected it. Is that legal? We then didn't receive the abandoned property notice for 5 weeks after it had been mailed and her demand dates have all passed? Do we have 8 days to respond for the date we actually received the mail? ( The reason and circumstances of the notice are complicated and she has not previously operated under good faith for the entirety of our tenancy, I need clarification to the legality of a landlord meddling with mail to a forward address)

Attorney Answers 1


The landlord is only required to send the notice to the last address they have for you. If the notice failed to get to you because of a problem with forwarding, that isn't the landlord's responsibility. If, as you say, the landlord deliberately did something to prevent the notice from reaching you, the landlord would owe damages for loss to the property and potentially also a statutory penalty.

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If the landlord asked for "Returned Service", is that considered interfering because it causes the mail to be returned to sender? It prohibits our forwarding from taking place and us receiving our mail in a timely manner. She could have requested "Change of address request" which would not have had it returned to her and the forwarding would have continued.

Douglas A Kincaid

Douglas A Kincaid


The Post Office only does the return service if it can't find an address to deliver the mail to. It isn't interference by the landlord at all. It was possibly a mistake by the Post Office to return the mail instead of forwarding it, but it isn't anything to blame on the landlord.

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