Legislation sets timeframes for disposition of abandoned tenant property
Legislation introduced by Senator Pat Browne setting statewide timeframes for the disposition of personal property abandoned when a tenant leaves a rental unit received final legislative approval (Saturday, June 30) and is headed to the Governor’s desk for enactment into law.
Senate Bill 887 specifically defines the respective rights and duties of tenants and landlords when a tenant leaves behind personal property following the termination of the tenant’s occupation of the premises.
“I appreciate my colleagues’ support for this bill. Currently, there is no statewide standard as to what to do with personal property that is left behind by a tenant when they relinquish possession of a rental property,” Senator Browne said. “The lack of such guidelines creates confusion with regard to a landlord’s obligation on how to treat such property and for what length of time and on the other side, tenants have no clear procedure or confidence that such property will be properly maintained and can be retrieved.”
Senator Browne’s legislation requires the landlord to notify the tenant of abandoned personal property. Within 10 days of receiving notification, the tenant must contact the landlord and declare his or her intentions to retrieve the property. If the tenant does not respond to the notification, the landlord may dispose of the property at the end of 10 days.
If the tenant does make contact to the landlord within the 10 days, the landlord must hold the property for 30 days, but the tenant will be responsible for any storage fees incurred during that time period.