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The Crews Law Firm > Contracts

Landlords Misusing Tenant’s Security Deposit Money

Benjamin Franklin looks up from a crisp $100 bill. Maybe this is part of a security deposit.

Security Deposits: An Overview Most people are familiar with the concept of a security deposit. Landlords typically request these deposits as collateral against the risk that tenants will cause damage. This makes a lot of sense. If a tenant moves in and trashes the property, the landlord can lawfully withhold their security deposit to make repairs. What if the tenant skips town without paying their last month's rent? The landlord can withhold the deposit for that as well. But what if the landlord is withholding the entire deposit and charging more on top of that for no reason? What if, once the...

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Heartbalm Torts in North Carolina

What Is a "Heart Balm" Action? Heart balm actions (or heart balm torts) are a little old-fashioned. In fact, North Carolina is one of the few states that still recognizes them. They exist in order to right certain wrongs that can happen in a marriage. As their name implies, they are meant to provide a balm to a person's broken heart. On one hand, these actions are archaic. They place a very high value on monogamy and marriage. They seem to uphold old-fashioned ideas. They are, after all, based on very old laws meant to punish people for "debauching" another man's wife....

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Creating a Separation Agreement

In an ideal world, every marriage would be happy. But, we all know that is not the reality. Couples may decide to separate for many reasons. As the comedian Louie C.K. said, “Divorce is always good news. I know that sounds weird, but it’s true because no good marriage has ever ended in divorce.” Divorce can be extremely difficult and painful. But, after the divorce, both parties will be free from a bad marriage.   Here are some tips on how to craft a separation agreement. The separation agreement is a private contract between the spouses. It can determine child custody, alimony,...

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How to Evict a Tenant in North Carolina

    The most common reason for a landlord to evict a tenant is if the tenant fails to pay rent. Another reason may be if the tenant stays in the property after the lease has run out. This is called a “holdover tenant.” But how exactly does a landlord evict a tenant? 1. Give notice to the tenant.   The landlord needs to make the tenants aware that they will try to evict them. The tenants also need to know why the landlord is trying to evict them. The landlord should look closely at the lease to see how to do this. It should...

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Commercial Landlord Tenant Law: Listen to the Lease!

    Landlords and tenants in commercial leases have the same goal: staying open for business! But we all know that despite people’s best intentions, things can go wrong. Commercial leases are no exception. Let’s talk about some “Do’s” and “Don’t’s” in commercial landlord tenant law.   Read the Lease!   A lease is a private contract between two parties. A good lease should account for all of the problems that might arise in a landlord/tenant relationship. Landlords should make sure that the lease clearly spells out the procedure they can follow if needed. For instance, what can the landlord do if the tenant fails to...

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