Are Landlords Responsible For Bed Bugs in Maryland?

In Maryland, many tenants need to know the answer to the question,  In Maryland, Are Landlords Responsible For Bed Bugs? The answer is often YES, landlords are responsible for dealing with infestations in the apartments they own and manage.

Then, when dealing with a bad landlord, the next question is often: My Apartment Has Bed Bugs What Are My Rights In Maryland?

These questions often arise in Baltimore, given Baltimore being Orkin’s No. 2 City for Bed Bugs in 2021. That means that many tenants are suffering from bed bug infestation and need legal help to deal with bad landlords.

In Maryland, all apartments are required to be free of bed bug infestation at the beginning of the lease. Of course, apartments are not always free of bed bugs at the beginning of the lease and instead are already infested from the prior tenant.  When an apartment is leased with a bed bug infestation, tenants have legal rights and can often recover compensation against the landlord.

Whitney, LLP provides a lawyer for bed bugs for victims of bed bug infestations involving infested apartments, hotels, AirBnBs, vacation rentals, hospitals and mattress and furniture companies. We primarily represent clients across Maryland.

We have recovered over $13,000,000 for our Clients in bed bug cases as compensation for bites, scarring, emotional distress and property damage.

  • Click here to review our prior bed bug settlements and verdicts;
  • Click here to read what some of our clients have said about us; and
  • Click here to read our blogs on our bed bug cases, settlements and other bed bug legal issues.

What Is Your Case Worth? We offer Legal Consultations and most Clients pay no out of pocket fees or expenses. Call us at 410 583 8000, or use our Quick Contact Form, to discuss your potential case.  Here is our YouTube Channel  for videos on bed bugs claims, cases and legal issues.

Are Landlords Responsible For Bed Bugs After Moving In?

Yes, generally,  landlords are responsible for bed bug after a tenant moves into a bed bug infested apartment in Maryland.  It often takes a lawyer for bed bugs to hold them responsible, though.

Tenants often have the problem when they find a bed bug infestation in their apartment shortly after moving in. To make matters worse, the landlord will not pay for inspection or treatment.

This is a problem because many tenants who experience bed bugs cannot afford to pay for expensive inspections and treatments, and rely on the landlord to perform the duties that they are supposed to perform.

In Maryland, landlords are usually responsible for paying for bed bug treatments. The way that responsibility for payment for bed bug infestations and treatment is determined, is usually by looking at the city or the county code.

When tenants ask their landlords, are landlords responsible for bed bugs, landlords often lie. Dishonest landlords often try to shift the cost to tenants who are not aware of the law. Dishonest landlords may also use language in the lease that is unlawful to try and trick tenants into paying for inspections and treatment.

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Bed Bugs Found 2 Days After Moving into an infested apartment in Maryland

Signs of Bed Bugs In a New Apartment

Some of the signs of a tenant moving into an apartment with a pre-existing bed bug infestation include finding the tiny little brown bugs crawling on the walls and on the bed and finding itchy bites and red itchy bites across the skin of tenants living in the apartment.

When new tenants find bed bugs crawling on the wall, it usually means that there is a heavy infestation, or, a treatment was just done and the bugs are crawling to escape the chemicals.

When a tenant finds bed bugs shortly after moving into a new apartment, they need to immediately put the landlord on notice of the problem so the landlord knows that they need to inspect and treat. The landlord should quickly call a licensed extermination company, but they may not.

Many landlords do not hire a professional company due to the cost. Instead, they will have their in-house maintenance workers perform ineffective self-help treatments with off-the-shelf chemicals that almost always do not work and often make the problem worse.

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Adjacent units for bed bug inspections include the apartments that are above, below and on either side of the target unit.

Landlords Must Inspect Adjacent Units for Bed Bugs

As part of any inspection for bed bugs in an apartment the landlord always needs to make sure the adjacent apartments, both above, below, and side to side, are being inspected as well because that is where the bed bugs may very well be coming from.

However, the inspection and treatment of adjacent units can be expensive and many landlords are cheap, do not care about their tenants, and would prefer to save the money for themselves.

Instead, they approach the infestation as of only the one apartment has an issue, which often allows the infestation to spread to and from adjacent units, which will eventually spread throughout the whole building.

A negligent landlord can be sued by a lawyer for bed bugs to help tenants fight back, get treatment and recover compensation.

You Can Sue Negligent Landlords for Bed Bugs

When a landlord does not take the proper action after a tenant reports bedbugs, that landlord is negligent.  A negligent landlord includes one who does not inspect all adjacent units or does not have proper treatment performed that relatively quickly removes the infestation.  Whitney, LLP has filed many lawsuits against landlords for negligently handling bed bug infestations.

When the landlord is negligent, that allows the tenant to file a lawsuit and bring claims against the landlord to recover compensation for the damages.  The tenant can file a bed bug lawsuit or a bed bug insurance claim.  Tenants are often able to recover compensation for bed bug bites, emotional distress, property damage, and other economic loss.

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Daniel W. Whitney, Sr. and Daniel W. Whitney, Jr. of Whitney, LLP

Whitney, LLP’s Lawyer for Bed Bugs Represents Tenants in Bed Bug Infested Apartments

The law firm of Whitney LLP has recovered over $13 million for our clients, with many of them in Maryland, and dealing with bad landlords who do not properly treat bed bug infestations in their tenants’ apartments.

We have represented tenants in Section 8 housing in Baltimore, tenants in luxury apartments in Rockville, and tenants in all types of apartments in between. The common denominator is that the landlord is required to quickly inspect and properly treat an infestation once they are aware of it.

If you were leased a bed bug infested apartment, even if the landlord began to treat it quickly after you reported it, you may be entitled to compensation for the bed bug bites and emotional distress of the situation.

What Is Your Case Worth? We offer Legal Consultations and most Clients pay no out of pocket fees or expenses. Call us at 410 583 8000, or use our Quick Contact Form, to discuss your potential case.

Whenever bed bugs appear in a new apartment, it is most likely that the infestation was pre-existing, and that the landlord failed to do a proper inspection before leasing it to the new tenant to make sure that it was safe, habitable and insect free.


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