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Do I have to notify tenants of installed security cameras at apartment complex?

Mcallen, TX |

Due to a string of break in and electric meter thefts I installed cctv cameras and began recording 24/7. The cameras record activity at the entrance, the back and the east and west sides of the apartment complex. Am I legally obligated to notify tenants of the cameras? What should such a notice include?

Attorney Answers 1


Dear Mcallen Landlord:

I am an attorney licensed to practice law in New York. I do not practice law in Texas.

Updating the security to help deal with the break ins and electric meter thefts, is supposedly for your purpose and not an enhanced service that you are providing to tenants. You do not necessarily want your tenants to conclude that the CCTV is a service added to their rights as tenants and that this will protect them from a robbery (and of course this will help police.) But without communication with the tenants about the purpose of the new CCTV you also risk your tenants concluding that you are spying on their coming and going and who else is visiting or accompanying a tenant into the building.

You want to be sure that your tenants do not construe your efforts to deal with this local crime wave as an affront on their expectation of "quiet enjoyment."

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So you may want to consult with your attorney how best to bring this to the attention of the tenants in your building.

Because you may be concerned that no attorney took a look at your question, I want you to know, that may not be so.

As far as a reason why your question was missed along the way: Your question may have "aged out" of the most recent questions posted and the longer the time the question is not answered the further it moves away from the newest and most recent questions; sometimes a question posted in AVVO does not lead to an answer that may solve your problem or direct you to a solution; lawyers when answering online questions where no lawyer and client relation may exist may be shy sometime to propose an answer that may be construed as legal advice. When I look to the older unanswered questions, even when not in my state, I try to put information where you may find a source to help yourself, and I will always suggest that you seek local counsel as well.

You may try again and renew the question so that it is a current and new question for attorneys in your state. There is a Texas attorney answering Landlord and Tenant questions all over the country and this may just have passed by. So try again.

Good luck.

The answer provided to you is in the nature of general information. The general proposition being that you should try to avoid a bad outcome if you can.

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