Is it blackmail/extortion for me to threaten to report my landlord to the inspector?

Asked over 1 year ago - Wilbraham, MA

Would it constitute blackmail or extortion for me to threaten to report code violations to the building inspector unless my landlord returns my security deposit?

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Melissa Anne Levine-Piro

    Contributor Level 14


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Threatening anyone is not an advisable route. Have you asked your landlord in writing for your deposit back? If so, what has your landlord said as to why he will not give it back? Landlords are required to return security deposits within 30 days or they can be subject to triple damages. Your best bet is to have an attorney send a demand letter on your behalf, many attorneys will do so on a contingency fee basis and if that doesn't work take action in court. Best of luck.

    Melissa Levine

    Melissa Levine is a licensed attorney in Massachusetts. All answers are based on Massachusetts law and should not... more
  2. Erik Hammarlund

    Contributor Level 18


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . The chances are decent that you're entitled to your deposit back no matter what. I say that because the security deposit statute is so precise and difficult that only a very small percentage of landlords manage to fully comply, and noncompliance will entitle you to the return of your deposit.

    Take a look at the statute, here.

    You might be particularly interested in sections (b), (c) and (d), which are often violated and which entitle you to get the deposit back.

    Do you want accurate, personalized, legal advice that you can rely on? You will have to hire an attorney, not ask... more
  3. Henry Lebensbaum

    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . It depends how it is phrased

    henry lebensbaum esq 300 Brickstone Sq Ste 201 andover, ma -- (978) 749-3606.
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