Jan 05

“I think it’s part of a broader contempt that government officials have for renters,” he continues. “A lot of it is aimed at pushing landlords out as well. A lot of cities are hostile towards rental properties and their ‘less desirable’ occupants [compared to] owner occupants. Both sides of the transaction are being punished.”

Source: Crime-Free Housing Ordinances Are Spreading, but Some Groups Are Fighting Back – Next City

Nov 26

Low-income people and families can face eviction notices, problems with social security benefits, bankruptcy and more without the resources to get legal help. The Legal Aid Society of Milwaukee has been tackling these issues by providing free civil legal services for Milwaukee’s low-income population for over 100 years. In a large room at the United Community Center (UCC) on Milwaukee’s south side, every Wednesday, lawyers and law student volunteers meet with dozens of people from the surrounding community

Source: Milwaukee’s Legal Aid Society Takes On Neighborhood Lawyering | WUWM

Oct 28

I’m amazed by the number of landlords who give money or rent concessions to tenants, thinking they just settled a dispute, only to find themselves at the wrong end of subsequent claims for those same disputes.

Source: Money For Nothing: Getting The Most From Your Tenant Settlement Strategies

Apr 25

More and more tenants are reporting that landlords are threatening them with deportation in attempts to raise rent, evict, or simply avoid fixing things in their units.

Source: Landlords Are Using ICE Threats to Evict Tenants

Apr 23

The records link Hannity to a group of shell companies that spent at least $90m on more than 870 homes in seven states over the past decade. The properties range from luxurious mansions to rentals for low-income families. Hannity is the hidden owner behind some of the shell companies and his attorney did not dispute that he owns all of them. Dozens of the properties were bought at a discount in 2013, after banks foreclosed on their previous owners for defaulting on mortgages. Before and after then, Hannity

Source: Michael Cohen case shines light on Sean Hannity’s property empire 

Apr 04

A Seattle judge has struck down Seattle’s ordinance saying landlords must accept the first qualified tenant who applies, according to reports.

A King County Superior Court Judge, Suzanne Parisien, struck down the ordinance saying “choosing a tenant is a fundamental attribute of property ownership.”

Source: Seattle Law Making Landlords Accept First Qualified Tenant Struck Down

Feb 24

I soon identified a dozen victims of Bachman’s, spread up and down the East Coast. Bachman, these stories made clear, was a serial squatter operating on a virtuosic scale, driving roommate after roommate into court and often from their home. But Bachman wasn’t a typical squatter in that he did not appear especially interested in strong-arming his way to free rent (although he often granted himself that privilege); instead, he seemed to relish the anguish of those who had taken him in without realizing that they would soon be pulled into a terrifying battle for their home. Nothing they did could satisfy or appease him, because the objective was not material gain but, seemingly, the sadistic pleasure of watching them squirm as he displaced them.

Source: Jamison Bachman, the Worst Roommate Ever

Feb 22

When Ramona Morales agreed to pay a $225 fine for failing to force her tenants to remove a few backyard chickens, she had no way of knowing that what started out as an innocent misunderstanding would ultimately cost her nearly $6,000.

Ramona was one of an untold number of California homeowners who have been caught up in an unconstitutional scheme by a private law firm, Silver & Wright, to turn cities’ property maintenance codes into big business.

On paper, the firm’s business model is straightforward: cities hire Silver & Wright to serve as their official city prosecutor. Then, whenever a property owner agrees to plead guilty and pay a fine—rather than fight it in court—Silver & Wright bills the owner for every second spent prosecuting the case at private firm rates, even if that costs ten or a hundred times more than the original fine. But the reality of Silver & Wright’s business model is much more grim. Cases like Ramona’s—along with many others’—demonstrate the dangers of allowing perverse financial incentives to distort the justice system.

Source: Class Action Lawsuit Challenges California Cities’ For-Profit Prosecution Scheme – Institute for Justice

Feb 22

The developer of the former 5Pointz site says he will appeal a federal judge’s ruling awarding $6.75 million to 21 artists whose rights were violated when he whitewashed and destroyed their works in 2013.Jerry Wolkoff, the owner of the site where two luxury residential buildings are now rising, says the Feb. 12 ruling by Eastern District Judge Frederic Block “makes no sense.”“The whole thing is so silly,” Wolkoff told the LIC Post. “They shouldn’t get one penny. Hopefully the judges [in appeals court] w

Source: 5Pointz Developer Says He Will Appeal Judge’s Ruling Awarding $6.75 Million to Graffiti Artists | LIC Post

Feb 16

Famed environmentalist Maggy Hurchalla, the 77-year-old sister of deceased Clinton-era U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno and a South Florida political powerhouse in her own right, has been ordered to pay $4.4 million to a development company that sued her in Stuart.

To make matters more complicated, Hurchalla’s email exchanges with county commissioners have led to criminal proceedings against three politicians: Current Martin County commissioners Sarah Heard and Ed Fielding, and former Commissioner Anne Scott.

On the stand Tuesday, Hurchalla admitted to sending some emails to commissioners on the county’s official servers while communicating with the trio on their private accounts. In her private emails, she appeared to coach Fielding on how to get rid of Lake Point.

Source: Environmentalist ordered to pay $4.4 million to developer

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