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A person may lawfully possess a handgun or carry a handgun in their home, automobile, and or business under the current law without a permit.
Requirements for applicants include:
An application can be printed (PDF) or can be picked up at either of the following locations:
Upon completion of the application, you must call the number listed on the application to schedule an appointment to have your picture and fingerprints taken.
Within 90 days, the Sheriff shall approve or deny the permit application.
A $152.50 processing fee in the form of a cashier's check or money order, or personal check, made payable to the Pueblo County Sheriff's Office must be submitted with your application. This fee pays for a state and national criminal history check (fingerprints) and for an Insta-check (NICS) per Statute. This is required for all regular civilian applicants. This fee pays for forms, identification cards, local criminal history checks, and other administrative costs.
For renewals a $63 fee in the form of a cashier's check or money order, or personal check, made payable to the Pueblo County Sheriff's Office must be submitted with your application.
All permits are valid for a period of 5 years from the date of issuance, but can be revoked at any time for misuse.
The states that currently have reciprocity with Colorado are:
Within 30 days after a permit holder in all instances changes the address specified on his or her permit the permittee shall notify the issuing Sheriff of the change of address and will need to fill out the proper change of address form which needs to be notarized. Failure to notify the Sheriff is a Class 1 Petty Offense.
Within three business days after a permit is lost, stolen or damaged, the permittee shall notify the issuing Sheriff. The permittee may be issued a new permit upon submittal of a notarized statement to the issuing Sheriff that the permit was lost, stolen or destroyed. Failure to notify the Sheriff is a Class 1 Petty Offense.
You can send mail to:Pueblo County Detention CenterInmate's Full Name909 Court StreetPueblo, CO 81003
This list is not all-inclusive, just samples.
Visits will not be defined by alphabet or housing location, they are only limited by the two visits per week for in-house visiting and can be limited by us for segregation areas.
Essentially, as little as possible.
You can use a cash or surety bond.
Find out if someone is in custody using the Inmate Query.
Give money to an inmate in custody using the Access Corrections Website.
You can find out someone's charges or bond using the Inmate Query website.
Submit a complaint using our online form.
All Pueblo City and County residents with wireless and Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) subscriptions, especially those without a land-line phone. Subscribers' wireless and VoIP information will be kept in a separate database so that if subscribers are already in the 911 land-line database their information will not be changed.
No. All of the information you enter will feed directly into the ENS secure database. This information can only be accessed by system administrators and the data will never be sold or distributed to third parties.
You will receive phone calls when ENS is activated and your address is within the geographic area chosen to receive the notification message. The ENS system will only be activated for emergency purposes.
If you move after you have entered your information into the website you will need to go back into the website and re-enter your information with your new address.
No. The last address that you enter into the website will be the only location that your telephone number is associated with. Your telephone number can only be in the database once, at one location.
Yes. If you enter an address that does not exist you will not be in the database and will not be contacted when the ENS is activated.
No. You will only receive phone calls when the ENS is activated and your address is within the geographic notification area chosen. The system will only be activated for emergency purposes.
Yes. No matter where you are physically located, you will only receive calls for emergencies that affect the address entered into the website. So if you are on vacation in a different state you will still receive a phone call if the address you entered is affected by an emergency.
Very generally speaking, a foreclosure of the property in which the unit is located will not affect the lease. After foreclosure begins, the tenant should continue to pay rent in the same manner as before. When the foreclosure is complete and the title to the property passes, the tenant will get notice saying to whom and how to pay rent in the futureDuring the course of the foreclosure, a receiver may be appointed by the court to oversee the management of the property. If this happens, the tenant will be notified and should then comply with the court order.
Occasionally the foreclosing lender will want to terminate a lease prior to its expiration. Generally, the lender will be able to accomplish this by sending the proper notices of foreclosure to the tenant. If this should happen and the lender does not contact the tenant to reconfirm the lease, the lease will end when title to the property passes. Note that a lease that is recorded prior to the mortgage cannot be affected by the foreclosure. This is a very uncommon occurrence.
Although the issue is not resolved in Colorado, a majority of other states holds that a successor landlord, that is, the new owner of the property who gets title by foreclosure, is generally not responsible for the return of the tenant's security deposit unless the new landlord actually received it from the prior owner. The tenant must look to the original landlord for the return of the security deposit.
Generally, if the landlord files for bankruptcy protection, the lease may be assumed or rejected. The landlord must cure all of its defaults under the lease in order to continue it.
Generally, if the tenant files for bankruptcy protection, the trustee for the tenant's bankruptcy estate may elect to assume or reject an un-expired lease. If the tenant wants to assume the lease and keep it in effect, the tenant may have to pay all back rental payments and provide assurance of future performance under the lease. If the tenant rejects the lease, the tenant must give up possession of the unit and move out. The unpaid rent from the period prior to the filing of bankruptcy becomes a general unsecured claim of the landlord against the tenant, except to the extent of the security deposit. The landlord may also have a claim for damages for lost future rents.
The lease controls when the landlord may end the tenancy and take steps to evict the tenant. If there is no written lease, the Colorado statutes control. The most commons reasons for eviction are: Non-payment of rent, violation of the lease provisions and "No Cause" if there is no agreement as to the term of occupancy. If there is no such agreement, the landlord does not need a reason to terminate the tenancy and can evict the tenant after giving the proper notice.
This ability to evict for "no cause" is limited. It does not apply to eviction from publicly subsidized housing. Also, eviction because of the race, creed, religion, sex, handicap, color, national origin, ancestry, marital status or familial status of the tenant is unlawful. Endangerment of person or property on the premises or committing a violent or drug-related felony on or near the premises.
The first step in the eviction process is the service of proper written notice. Verbal requests for the tenant to vacate are never sufficient. The notice that is required varies depending upon the reason for eviction.
The landlord must give written notice to the tenant by personally serving or posting in a conspicuous place the notice called "Demand for Compliance or Possession." This notice gives the tenant a choice of paying in three days the full amount of the rent that is due or giving up possession of the unit within three days. The right to this notice cannot be waived in the lease.
In calculating the three day period, do not count the day that notice is given. The three-day period also does not include weekends or holidays. If the tenant pays the rent in the three-day period, the landlord must accept it. If the tenant does not pay and does not move out, the eviction process can continue.
The landlord must give proper notice to the tenant by personally serving or posting in a conspicuous place, the notice called "Demand for Compliance or Possession. This notice explains the violation of the lease and gives the tenant the alternative of correcting the breach within three days or vacating the unit within three days. If the tenant does not move out or cure the breach by the end of the three day period, the landlord may file an eviction suit.
A tenant with a month-to-month periodic tenancy may be evicted at the end of any rental period if the landlord gives the proper notice. The landlord must give notice to the tenant by personally serving or posting in a conspicuous place a "Notice to Vacate." This notice must be delivered to the tenant at least ten days before the rent is due (assuming a month-to-month tenancy). If the tenant does not move out by the end of the rental period, the landlord may file an eviction suit to regain possession of the unit.
No written notice is required if the lease term ends on a certain day and there is no automatic extension of the term given in the lease. If the tenant does not move out by the end of the term, the landlord can immediately begin an eviction action.
A forcible entry and detainer action may be brought in either the district court or the county court where the property is located. Most residential cases are brought in the county court.
The tenant must file a written answer at or before the time when the tenant is ordered to appear in court. There is a fee to file an answer. The answer may deny the charges of the complaint and list any claims the tenant may have against the landlord. If the tenant does not file an answer the landlord will receive a default judgment.
At the trial, the judge may rule in favor of the landlord or the tenant. If the judgment is in the landlord's favor, the court may order the tenant not only to vacate the unit, but also to pay back rent and/or damages. Attorney's fees and court costs may be awarded to the prevailing party.
After a judgment against the tenant, the tenant has 48 hours to vacate. After that time, the landlord can get a Writ of Restitution and deliver it to the Sheriff. The Sheriff may then forcibly evict the tenant, that is, move the tenant's possessions onto the street. Neither the Sheriff nor the landlord is under a legal duty to safeguard the tenant's possessions after they have been removed.
No, lockouts are illegal. Landlords that resort to illegal self-help remedies to deny the tenant access to the unit may become liable for damages for a wrongful eviction. If the tenant has been locked out of the unit, the tenant may break the lock to enter. Tenants cannot be prosecuted for breaking into their units. At most, the tenant will be held liable for the cost of the repair to the lock on the door.
However, a tenant may be arrested for breaking or re-entering, if the police have reason to suspect that breaking and entering is occurring. Seek legal advice from an attorney before breaking the lock. The locks may be changed if the Writ of Restitution has been executed by the Sheriff. After the eviction has taken place, the tenant cannot enter the unit without the permission of the landlord.
If it appears that the tenant has moved out and does not intend to return, the landlord may take over possession of the unit without resorting to the judicial eviction process (if no longer valuable personal property is left behind).
The landlord should make a reasonable effort to contact the former tenant. If the landlord has not heard from the tenant or is not aware of the tenant's intention to not abandon the property, the landlord may proceed to sell the property in accordance with law. The landlord may also have the property removed from the unit pursuant to the execution of a Writ of Restitution. This method of property removal and disposal is the least likely to result in liability to the landlord.
If the abandoned property is a motor vehicle, different procedures must be followed. Contact an attorney or the local law enforcement agency.
A lease (sometimes called a rental agreement) is a contract between a tenant and a landlord that gives the tenant the right to live in a house or apartment that the landlord owns in exchange for the payment of rent. A lease is a legally binding contract, which means that it can be enforced by the courts.
A lease is the best evidence of the specific rights and responsibilities of both the landlord and the tenant. The lease tells both parties what they can count on receiving and what they are expected to do.
No. Oral leases for one year or less are as binding and enforceable as written leases, but oral agreements are much more difficult to prove. A lease for longer than one year must be in writing to be enforced by the courts. Regardless of how long the lease is, to avoid hassle and problems, get it in writing.
At a minimum, a good lease should address:
Be sure to talk about concerns before they become problems.
Colorado law provides that every lease contains an implied term that the tenant shall not commit a "substantial violation" while in possession of the premises. A substantial violation means any act which occurs on or near the premises and endangers the person or willfully and substantially endangers the property of the landlord, any co-tenant or any person living on or near the premises, or occurs on or near the premises and constitutes a violent or drug related felony. The commission of a substantial violation is a breach of the lease and subjects the tenant to eviction.
If there is something in the lease that you do not understand or agree with, do not sign it. Talk it over with the other person. Do not sign the lease until both of you understand it and can comply with everything in it. Once you sign the lease, you are bound to it, and a court will probably enforce it. If any part of the written agreement is changed by crossing out or writing in the change, both of you should initial the change. Be sure that all blanks on a pre-printed lease form are filled in or marked through before you sign.
A landlord has no legal obligation to give tenants a copy of the lease. A tenant should insist on signing two copies of the lease so that each party can have a fully executed document. Each of you should keep a signed copy of the lease, at least until the tenant has moved out and a mutual agreement has been reached about the return of the security deposit.
The landlord cannot terminate a lease and evict a tenant simply because the landlord wants to sell the building (unless the lease expressly gives the landlord this right). When a new owner purchases a building, the new owner also purchases all of the obligations of the previous owner, including the obligation to honor the existing leases. The new owner may not increase rent or change the house rules until the existing written leases expire. A tenant should continue to pay rent to the previous landlord in the same way as before, until receipt of a written notice signed by the previous landlord telling the tenant to begin paying rent to someone else.
Whoever signs the lease as a tenant is responsible for all of the rent (unless the lease provides otherwise). This means that if three people decide to rent an apartment together, but only one of them signs the lease, then only that one person is responsible to the landlord for all of the rent. Likewise, if all three sign the lease, then each one is responsible for all of the rent. The landlord, of course, cannot collect the same rent more than once, but the landlord is not limited to looking to each roommate for only one-third of the rent.
A roommate who is stuck paying the entire rent may sue any non-paying roommates for their share. It is important to understand that the disagreement is between the roommates, not with the landlord. If a roommate moves out, s/he should ask the landlord to remove his/her name from the lease and get any roommate's name added. Remember, when one roommate moves and others stay, the absent roommate is not relieved from potential liability for all of the rent, if s/he signed the lease, unless the landlord agrees.
When the tenant stays in the unit beyond the end of the term provided in the written lease, the landlord may choose to treat the tenant as either a trespasser or a continuing tenant. The landlord elects to treat tenant as a trespasser by beginning eviction proceedings. The landlord may treat tenant as a continuing tenant rather than a trespasser by continuing to accept rent. The tenant then is considered a "holdover" tenant and may remain in the unit, subject to the provisions in the original lease which control the holdover tenancy. The new term is for the same length of time as the original term.
For example, the tenant has a one year lease but continues to live in the unit after the end if the one year, pays the rent, and the landlord accepts the rent, then the tenant and the landlord may have effectively agreed to renew the lease for another one-year period. This is the result if the lease does not state what happens when the tenant remains after the end of the term. Some leases contain a provision dealing with the issue in another way. Rather than a renewal of the full term of the lease, a lease might provide that the tenant can stay on a month-to month basis after the one-year term expires.
A holdover tenant must pay the rent specified in the original lease unless the landlord notified the tenant of a rent increase before the lease expired. By holding over after notification, the tenant is deemed to have agreed to the rental increase.
Tenants have challenged some clauses in leases which courts have judged to be unenforceable. Some of these clauses can be found in leases which are commonly used in Colorado and are available from stationery stores. Here are a few examples:
A landlord may refuse to rent to a prospective tenant because of dissatisfaction with the tenant's credit history or financial situation, or for no reason at all. In Colorado a landlord may not refuse to rent because of the tenant's:
Examples of housing discrimination include denying an interested person the opportunity to see, rent or buy an apartment or home, yet making it available to others and denying a minority or disabled tenant the same privileges as other tenants for such things as a parking spaces, needed repairs and services or the use of the apartment pool, dining room or clubhouse.
There are some exceptions to the general law prohibiting discrimination against members of protected classes. For example, discrimination in the rental of a room in a single family home occupied by the owner is acceptable. Preference may be given by a religious organization to persons of the same religious denomination. Preference may be given by a private club to its own members if the lodgings are incidental to the club's main purpose and the lodging is not owned or operated for a commercial purpose. Also exempt is discrimination against a person who has been convicted of the illegal manufacture or distribution of a controlled substance.
Discrimination in order to comply with zoning laws concerning marital status is also acceptable. The owner of a single family home is exempt from anti-discrimination laws in the rental of the single family home, provided that the owner does not own or have an interest in more than three single family homes, that the home is rented without the use of a estate agent or other person in the business of selling or renting property, and no illegal advertising is used.
Leases end for a variety of reasons. The most obvious reason is that the lease term expires. The lease also terminates if the tenant moves out with the landlord's agreement. In some situations, the lease may terminate if either party gives the other certain notice.
Finally, the lease may be terminated by the landlord after giving proper notice if the tenant breaches the terms of the lease. Termination of the lease is discussed in this section. The remedies available to the landlord or the tenant after the lease terminates are covered later in the section on Eviction.
If no expiration date is stated in the lease (or if there is no written lease) and if the tenant pays rent on a monthly basis, the tenant has a month-to-month tenancy. A month-to-month tenancy is certainly the most common type of periodic tenancy. However, the period for the tenancy can be week-to-week, six-month to six-month or year-to-year, depending upon the parties' agreement or how rent is paid. A periodic tenancy (for whatever the period may be) is automatically renewed for the next period, unless either the landlord or the tenant gives the other notice of termination. Either the landlord or the tenant can decide to terminate a periodic tenancy for any reason or for no reason at all.
To terminate a month-to-month tenancy for no reason or no cause, either the landlord or the tenant must give the other a Notice to Vacate at least ten days before the next rental payment is due. A year-to-year tenancy requires a three month advance notice to terminate. A week-to-week tenancy or a tenancy at will requires notice three days before the net rent is due. A six-month to six-month tenancy requires one month advance notice to terminate it.
Remember, a tenant is under the same notice requirements as a landlord if the tenant wishes to terminate a periodic tenancy. Failure to give timely notice will result in the tenant's liability for rent for another period. The notice must be in writing and delivered directly to the landlord or the tenant, as the case may be, or the landlord may deliver a copy to a member of the tenant's family over the age of 15 occupying the unit, or may post the notice conspicuously on the door of the unit. Mailing of the notice is not effective.
A lease that provides for a specific ending date terminates on that given date. Neither party has to give a Notice to Vacate when the term ends at a certain time by agreement. If the tenant does not move out by the end of the stated term (known as "holding over") and the landlord accepts rent, then the tenant may stay subject to the provisions in the original lease. The tenancy becomes a periodic tenancy for the same period as the original term.
For example, if the lease was for one year, and the tenant holds over with the consent of the landlord, the tenant gets a tenancy for another year, unless the lease provides otherwise. Some leases provide that if the tenant holds over with the consent of the landlord, the tenancy becomes month-to-month rather than a renewal for the full term of the original lease.
An assignment of a lease transfers the tenant's entire interest in the lease to someone else. Under a sublease the subtenant typically pays something more or gets something less than is otherwise given in the lease between the tenant and the landlord.
Unless prohibited by the lease, the lease may be assigned or sublet without terminating it. The first tenant remains fully responsible for all of the obligations of the lease. Neither assignment nor subletting releases the tenant from liability to the landlord. If the lease requires the landlord's permission to assign or sublease, the landlord cannot arbitrarily or unreasonably reject a substitute tenant. The withholding of consent must be reasonable.
A lease is a contract. The tenant promises to meet the obligations of paying rent for the period specified in the lease. If the tenant moves out prior to the end of the lease without the agreement of the landlord or without justifying circumstances, the landlord may keep the security deposit to cover the unpaid portion of rent and may then sue the tenant for the remaining rent due for the balance of the term of the lease.
The landlord has an obligation to make an effort to re-let the unit. This is called "mitigation of damages." If the tenant surrenders the unit to the landlord and the landlord accepts the surrender and terminates the lease, the tenant is relieved of the responsibility to pay all future rents, unless the lease expressly and clearly provides otherwise.
When the tenant breaches the lease by not paying rent or by doing something else prohibited in the lease, the landlord may evict the tenant. The first step in the eviction procedure is to give the tenant a Demand for Payment of Rent or Possession. By giving this notice, the landlord elects to terminate the lease. Once the lease is terminated, the tenant is no longer responsible for future rent for the balance of the lease term. Unless the lease expressly and clearly provides for continuing liability for rent after the tenant leaves the unit, the tenant is liable for rent only through the date of moving out and is not liable for future rent under the lease.
If the lease does not provide for forfeiture of the landlord's rights because of the landlord's breach of the lease, then the tenant has no right to terminate the lease or abandon the unit before the expiration of the lease, even if the landlord breaches the lease. However, if the breach of the lease by the landlord renders the unit unfit for occupancy or deprives the tenant of the beneficial enjoyment of the unit, then the tenant may be justified in abandoning the unit without further liability to the landlord. The tenant can also sue the landlord for damages resulting from the landlord's failure to live up to the terms of the lease.
The lien covers the household furniture, goods, appliances, and other personal property of the tenant and household members located in the unit when the lien is asserted. The lien does not cover the following items:
These items are considered "exempt" from the lien.
The amount of the lien cannot exceed the amount of unpaid rent plus reasonable costs incurred in enforcing the lien, not including attorney's fees. If the value of the seized property is more than the amount of the landlord's valid claim, the tenant can assert claims against the landlord for conversion, trespass or repletion.
The landlord must first have a claim for unpaid rent from the tenant. The landlord may then enter the unit at a reasonable time and in a reasonable manner and take the property that is covered by the lien. The value of the seized property should not exceed the amount of the lien. Do not seize "exempt property." If the landlord substantially interferes with the tenant's right to reasonably occupy and enjoy the unit, the lien is forfeited and the tenant may have an action against the landlord for damages. If the tenant has vacated the unit, the landlord must give the tenant access to the unit at any reasonable time and in a reasonable manner to remove any property not covered by the lien.
If the amounts due are not paid within 30 days, the landlord may begin a personal property foreclosure action. The landlord must file a foreclosure action within 60 days from the date the claim arose or forfeit the lien and possibly become liable for damages for wrongfully withholding the tenant's property. A landlord that prevails in the foreclosure action may then sell the seized property at a public auction after giving ten days notice of the sale in the local newspaper. Any proceeds from the sale must be used to pay the lien, with any excess returned to the tenant.
The landlord does not need to follow all of the foreclosure procedures for property covered by the lien that the tenant has abandoned. Property is presumed abandoned if the tenant fails to contact the landlord for at least 30 days and the landlord, in good faith, has no knowledge of any evidence indicating that the tenant does not intend to abandon the property.
If the property has been abandoned, the landlord must give at least 15 days prior notice to the tenant before selling or disposing of the abandoned property. This notice may be sent to the tenant's last known address, by registered or certified mail, return receipt requested, signed by the addressee only. If the notice is returned unclaimed, the landlord must publish the notice at least one day in a newspaper in the county where the property is located. The landlord must keep proof of published notice for at least one year.
Before or shortly after the tenant moves in, the landlord and the tenant should walk through the unit together and inspect it in detail for any existing damage or defects and necessary cleaning, especially noting the general condition of all appliances. A checklist should be completed at this time. If the unit is furnished, the checklist includes a general description of all of the furniture in the unit. The landlord and the tenant both sign the checklist and each party keeps a copy.
If the landlord is not available to do the walkthrough, the tenant should complete the checklist anyway and give the landlord a copy. Try to get a friend to witness the condition of the unit or take pictures, specifically of any damaged or defective item in the unit. This information can prove invaluable when trying to get a return of the security deposit. Photographs and witnesses can prove that a condition existed at the beginning of the lease term.
The tenant takes the unit "as is" in its present condition. The rule of caveat emptor or "buyer beware" prevails in the landlord-tenant situation. Unless there is an agreement otherwise or the landlord makes a fraudulent misrepresentation, the tenant takes the unit as found with all known existing defects and those defects that can be determined by a reasonable inspection. It is the tenant's responsibility to examine the unit to determine its safety and condition before moving in.
Representations about the unit's general condition made by the landlord during negotiations for a lease, such as "The unit is spotless" or "The unit is in fabulous shape," are generally considered to be "dealer talk," "puffing" or mere expressions of opinion. If these opinions are not put in writing as the landlord's warranty or guarantee, the tenant will have little recourse if the statements prove to be untrue. However, if the landlord does indeed fraudulently misrepresent the habitability or condition of the unit, intending that the tenant rely on these statements, and the tenant does reasonably rely, the tenant may elect either to vacate the unit and rescind the lease or to remain in possession and sue the landlord for damages for the fraud. Fraud is a difficult matter to prove. A tenant should always seek legal assistance before moving out of a unit and breaking a lease.
A landlord does not have a duty to disclose to the tenant obvious defects which can be seen by the tenant during a reasonable inspection. However, the landlord is obligated to tell the tenant about hidden defects that the tenant could not discover by an ordinary examination but which are known or should have been known by the landlord. Upon discovery of the facts, the tenant may vacate the unit and end the lease, or s/he may remain in the unit and sue the landlord for damages. Again, a tenant should never move out of a unit or break a lease without first seeking legal advice.
Yes. The landlord may enter the unit at a reasonable time and in a reasonable manner without force or physical threats in the following situations:
If the landlord enters the unit without permission or without other proper authorization, the tenant may consider taking the following steps:
Yes. The tenant may have a claim against the landlord for a breach of the covenant of quiet enjoyment because of the acts or noise of a nearby tenant that is renting from the same landlord. The landlord must know of the other tenant's actions and not stop or control them. A landlord is not responsible for the acts of other neighbors who are not renting from the same landlord.
Sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination that is prohibited by the Colorado Fair Housing Act and the Federal Fair Housing Act. It is illegal for a landlord or agent to base housing decisions or conditions on whether an individual submits to or rejects sexual advances or favors.
Breaking a lease is a serious matter. However, if a tenant decides that the landlord's harassment is making the unit unlivable, the tenant may be able to move before the expiration of the lease term without liability for unpaid rent or re-rental fees. The tenant must have solid, convincing documentation outlining the type of harassment, when it occurred and who did the harassing.
Send a letter to the landlord stating this information and the intention to move because of it. The tenant should keep a copy of this letter. After moving, the tenant may have to present a defense if the landlord tries to collect unpaid rent for breaking the lease.
The general rule in Colorado is that the landlord is not responsible for maintaining or repairing the unit. There are only a few limited exceptions to this general rule:
Yes, if (and only if) the landlord expressly agreed to make repairs, then the tenant may deduct from the rent the reasonable costs of making the repairs that the landlord promised to do. Remember, in the absence of an express agreement to perform any particular repair, the landlord is not obligated to make the repair. Maintenance and repairs are the tenant's responsibility and the tenant must pay for them. Deducting the cost of repairs from the rent payment is very risky and if done without the legal right to do so, the tenant may be evicted for non-payment of rent. Before "repairing and deducting" the tenant should first discuss the matter with the landlord, then if no satisfaction is reached, get legal advice.
If the landlord has expressly promised to make repairs and has failed to fulfill that promise, the tenant has several options in addition to "repair and deduct." The tenant may be able to terminate the lease and move out of the unit without liability or may sue the landlord for damages. The tenant should always seek legal counsel before breaking a lease and moving out.
The landlord is not responsible for damages resulting from unsafe conditions that exist or develop in the unit, if the tenant knew of the dangerous condition or could have discovered it from inspection. However, if the dangerous condition is latent, that is, the tenant does not know about the condition and could not reasonably discover it and the landlord does know of or should reasonably know of it, then the landlord must repair it or face liability to the tenant if physical harm results from the conditions. Also, if the lease expressly requires the landlord to make specific repairs or to keep the unit in good repair, the landlord is liable for damages or injuries resulting from the failure to make those repairs or the failure to make the repairs properly.
The landlord must keep that part of a building under the landlord's control in a safe condition for use by all of the tenants. Failure to do so makes the landlord responsible for resulting injuries to people and damage to their property. For example, a water pipe that is part of the heating system of the apartment building is in the exclusive control of the landlord. It burst and caused water to come through the floor of a tenant's apartment.
The landlord was under a duty to keep the pipe in reasonably safe condition. The landlord's failure to inspect and repair the pipe after receiving notice of defective condition was negligent. The landlord is liable for damage to the tenant's personal property.
If the lease does not provide for the landlord to repair the unit, the tenant must make and pay for repairs. There is not much that a tenant can do to hold the landlord responsible for minor repairs. The tenant may have some very limited recourses in cases where a landlord's failure to make repairs resulted in serious long-standing habitability problems such as rodent infestation, no working plumbing, or generally abysmal conditions.
In every lease agreement (unless expressly agreed otherwise) there is an implied covenant of enjoyment. This means that the tenant has a right to have possession of the unit without interference or disturbance by the landlord. For serious problems that make the unit unlivable, a tenant may be able to invoke this covenant, refuse to pay rent, and move out. However, the tenant is not allowed to refuse to pay rent because of the problems and then continue to live in unit. A tenant may contact the local or state health department or the local housing department to report.
Hazards in the unit that pose a threat to health or safety. Although enforcement varies from locality to locality, a report to the appropriate department can prove helpful. The landlord may be fined for failing to correct a code violation. Be aware that some departments will declare a unit unfit for occupancy if the landlord fails to correct the code violation, leaving the tenant with no choice but to move.
A recent statute places the burden for certain gas related repairs on the landlord regardless of what the lease says. Under the Gas Equipment Hazards Act, the landlord has 72 hours after receiving notice to have a professional make any repairs necessary to alleviate a hazardous condition of a gas appliance, piping or other gas equipment. If the landlord fails to timely make the repairs, the tenant may move out, the lease is void and the security deposit must be returned to the tenant.
A security deposit is a sum of money that is paid by the tenant to the landlord to assure that the tenant performs the lease. A security deposit may be called a "damage deposit, a cleaning deposit or a pet deposit." Regardless of its name, if the money is given to assure performance by the tenant, the Colorado laws discussed in this section apply. A deposit that is given as a prepayment of rent in order to hold a unit is not a security deposit and is therefore not subject to the security deposit laws. The security deposit laws apply only to residential units, not to commercial premises.
The landlord may keep the security deposit for many different reasons. The most common reason for keeping the deposit is to pay for damages to the unit over and above "normal wear and tear. " Normal wear and tear, is deterioration that occurs by living in the unit without negligence, carelessness, accident, or abuse of the unit by the tenant or members of the household, or their guests. The landlord may also keep the deposit for nonpayment of rent, for abandonment of the unit, nonpayment of utility charges, repair work or cleaning contracted for but not paid for by the tenant, or for any other breach of the lease by the tenant.
The amount of the security deposit is not set by law. The security deposit is the amount upon which the landlord and the tenant agree.
Colorado law does not require the landlord to hold the security deposit in a separate or escrow account. The landlord may hold the security deposit in a general account commingled with other funds. The landlord is not required by state law to pay the tenant interest on the amounts held as a security deposit. However, there are municipal codes in some municipalities, for example, Boulder, which require the payment of interest on security deposits.
If the tenant has given the proper notice to the landlord of moving out and if the tenant does not owe any money to the landlord and if the unit is left in the same condition as when the tenant moved in, except for normal wear and tear, the tenant is entitled to a full return of the security deposit.
Before or immediately after moving in, the tenant should walk through the unit with the landlord to make a list and take pictures of all existing damage and necessary cleaning. Both parties should sign two copies of the list and each should get a copy of the signed list to keep in their records.
The tenant should follow the same procedure when moving out. Even if one party refuses to take this walk through with the other, each party alone should carefully document the condition of the unit by making lists and taking pictures. Preferably a disinterested witness can also look at the condition of the unit.
If there is a reason for keeping any portion of the security deposit, the landlord must give the tenant a written statement listing the exact reasons for keeping it. These reasons may include damage to the unit or non-payment of rent or utilities, but may not include normal wear and tear to the unit. Along with this written statement, the landlord must return the difference between the security deposit and the amount retained.
If the landlord is keeping any of the security deposit to cover damages to the unit in excess of normal wear and tear, the landlord should obtain written estimates or other knowledge of the actual costs of the necessary repairs. "Guesstimate" or "ballpark" numbers do not justify keeping a security deposit.
The landlord must return the full amount of the security deposit or deliver the written statement within one month after the lease terminates or after the surrender and acceptance of the unit, whichever occurs last. The lease may give a longer period of time, but never more than 60 days. If the tenant moves out because the landlord fails to timely repair a hazardous condition of a gas appliance, piping, or other gas equipment, the landlord must return the security deposit within 72 hours after the tenant moves out.
The landlord must mail the statement and any required payment to the last known address of the tenant. The tenant should leave a forwarding address with the landlord. If no forwarding address is given and the landlord has no further information about where the tenant is located, the landlord may send the statement and payment to the address of the unit.
If the landlord does not provide the written statement within the required time period, the landlord loses all rights to keep any portion of security deposit for any reason, even if the tenant damaged the unit or failed to pay rent. However, the landlord can still sue for actual damages.
If the landlord willfully and wrongfully keeps a security deposit, the tenant may recover three times the amount of the security deposit wrongfully withheld, plus costs and reasonable attorneys' fees. (Under the Equipment Hazards Act, the penalty is double rather than triple the amount of the security deposit.) To these treble damages, after the one-month time period for returning the deposit expires, the tenant must send the landlord written notice of the intent to bring a lawsuit to recover the treble damages. The tenant must then wait seven days.
If the landlord fails to return the deposit within the seven-day period, the landlord's keeping of the security deposit is considered willful and the tenant can sue for treble damages. If the landlord returns the full amount of the security deposit within that seven-day period, the landlord has no liability for treble damages. Remember, at this point the landlord must return all of the deposit and cannot keep any of it for any reason. Once the landlord fails to give a written explanation within the one-month period, the landlord's right to keep any of the deposit is lost.
Even if the landlord gives the required explanation within the one-month time period, the tenant may challenge the amounts retained and under some circumstances may recover treble damages. The landlord may still be liable for three times the amount wrongfully withheld if the landlord did not act in good faith in keeping all or a portion of the deposit. The landlord has the burden of proving that s/he acted in good faith. The landlord does not necessarily act in bad faith simply by keeping more of the security deposit than is ultimately found to be owing. However, the amount of the discrepancy between the amount retained and amount actually owed is a factor to determining the faith of the landlord.
The laws regarding security deposits may not be waived. Any oral or written provision attempting to waive any part of the security deposit laws is against the public policy and void. For example, a common attempt to make a tenant waive the security deposit law is to place a restrictive endorsement on the back of a check from the landlord returning a portion of the security deposit.
The restriction might state that by cashing the check the tenant relieves the landlord from any further responsibility for the withheld portion of the security deposit. This type of restriction is not valid. A tenant can cash the returned security deposit check and not be bound by the restrictive statement on the back of the check.
A tenant must bring an action for treble damages within one year from the time that the return of the security deposit was due. After that one-year period passes, the tenant cannot sue for triple the amount of the deposit. The tenant has six years from the time that the security deposit should have been returned to bring an action for the recovery of the actual amount of the deposit.
When the landlord transfers the ownership of the unit by sale, death or otherwise, the landlord must transfer the security deposit to the landlord's successor and notify the tenant by mail of the transfer with the new landlord's name and address or return the security deposit less any lawful deduction to the tenant. If the landlord does either of these, the landlord no longer has any liability to the tenant for the return of the security deposit and the tenant can look only to the new landlord for a return of the deposit.
Most Sexually Violent Predators (SVPs) are sentenced to lengthy prison terms, although some SVPs can be released into the community on probation, directly upon sentencing, or on parole, following incarceration and sex offense-specific mental health treatment at the Department of Corrections (DOC). In determining an SVPs risk to the community, the Court or Parole Board considers the professional recommendation of the probation officer or DOC case manager, and the assessment of sex offense-specific mental health evaluators or treatment providers. If the SVP is determined to be manageable in the community, a recommendation may be made that he/she be supervised by probation or parole. In all cases, the Court or Parole Board must make the determination regarding the placement of an SVP.
SVPs represent a small proportion of all convicted sex offenders. Approximately 65% of all convicted sex offenders in Colorado receive a direct placement to the community from the Court. In Colorado, many SVPs are subject to the Lifetime Supervision Law, which prolongs a sex offender's sentence indeterminately.
Currently, the Colorado legislature only authorizes community notification when the highest risk sex offenders enter the community. The sex offender registry lists convicted sex offenders who have registered as required with local law enforcement in each community. Every citizen has the right to request registry information from their local law enforcement agency.
Sex offenders are closely monitored for high-risk behavior while under supervision and in treatment. Some sex offenders learn through treatment to manage their sexual offending behaviors and decrease their risk of re-offense. However, such behavioral management should not be considered a "cure," and treatment cannot permanently eliminate the risk that sex offenders may repeat their offenses.
Most SVPs are sentenced to lengthy prison terms, although some SVPs can be released into the community on probation, directly upon sentencing, or on parole, following incarceration and sex offense-specific mental health treatment at the Department of Corrections (DOC). In determining an SVPs risk to the community, the Court or Parole Board considers the professional recommendation of the probation officer or DOC case manager, and the assessment of sex offense-specific mental health evaluators or treatment providers. If the SVP is determined to be manageable in the community, a recommendation may be made that he/she be supervised by probation or parole. In all cases, the Court or Parole Board must make the determination regarding the placement of an SVP.
SVPs represent a small proportion of all convicted sex offenders. Approximately 65% of all convicted sex offenders in Colorado receive a direct placement to the community from the Court. In Colorado, many SVPs are subject to the Lifetime Supervision Law, which prolongs a sex offender's sentence indeterminately.
Avoid scary details. You know more than your children need to know. Use language that is honest and age-appropriate (e.g. "there are people who do bad things to children"). Include general information, as this may protect them from others who would try to harm them as well. If your children are likely to have contact with the SVP or other registered sex offenders, you should show your children the sex offender's photo.
In a manner that does not incite panic, instruct your children to avoid all contact with the SVP, even if the SVP's offense of conviction does not involve an offense against a child. Instruct them to avoid being in the vicinity of the SVP's residence or workplace. All sex offenders are prohibited from contact with children, and any contact should be reported to the supervising officer. Encourage your children to tell you if the sex offender initiates contact with them.
Review the public safety materials with your children and encourage your children to tell you about any contact with the SVP or any other person who makes them feel uncomfortable. It is important to teach your children about appropriate and inappropriate contact and to encourage regular discussion about their interactions with other people.