July 11

Do landlords have to provide AC? Here’s what renters should know.

Do landlords have to provide AC?  The Washington Post quoted Attorney Aaron Sokolow in an article about whether landlords are required to provide air conditioning. In the District of Columbia, the answer is: it depends.  There is no law requiring landlords to provide tenants with air conditioning.  But, if the landlord provides air conditioning as a service to the tenant, then the landlord must maintain it. DC Regulations define “maintain” as keeping the unit 15 degrees cooler than the outside.  You can read the Washington Post article here.

September 7

Attorney Aaron Sokolow Quoted in the Washington Post

Attorney Aaron Sokolow was quoted in the Washington Post in an article regarding a Washington, DC commercial landlord and tenant case. The column describes a pending commercial eviction case involving the District of Columbia and Union Station over a bicycle transit center. The story states, “Aaron Sokolow, an expert in District landlord-tenant disputes at the law firm Battino & Sokolow, said the suit could lead to the city being evicted unless officials present a strong defense. The vast majority of cases are settled outside of court, added Sokolow, who has biked by the Union Station building while headed to court.” You can read the article here.

December 7

Residential Lease Clarification Amendment Act of 2016

DC has enacted a new residential Landlord and Tenant Law. The Residential Lease Clarification Amendment Act of 2016 provides helpful insight on a number of relevant topics. Specifically, the law: (1) limits mandatory fees a landlord can charge; (2) defines “ordinary wear and tear” for security deposit purposes; (3) defines what constitutes reasonable notice and purpose for a landlord to access a tenant’s unit; (4) provides a duty for a landlord to mitigate damages after a tenant breaches the lease; (5) specifies timeframes for a tenant to provide notice to vacate and for a landlord to provide notice of a rent increase; (6) explains what consent is needed from a landlord in order for a tenant to sublease; and (7) provides penalties for noncompliance. You can read the new law here. Please contact Battino & Sokolow to discuss these matters in detail to ensure proper compliance.