Portland, OR asked in Landlord - Tenant and Contracts for Oregon

Q: So I have a bunch of questions, 1. Can you sue someone who evicted you during covid when not allowed and lock change

Also kept deposit and all my stuff

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1 Lawyer Answer
Gregory L Abbott
Gregory L Abbott
  • Landlord Tenant Lawyer
  • Portland, OR
  • Licensed in Oregon

A: It is unlikely that someone actually evicted you when they were not allowed to - if you believed they were not allowed to, you should have taken the matter to court and had a Judge dismiss their efforts. If, however, you simply moved out as a result of their request, that is not really evicting you. That is your voluntarily terminating your tenancy. Still, it depends upon the exact details and it may be that the landlord acted in violation of the statutes in trying to terminate your tenancy and if so, you may be entitled to recover damages. As for the deposit and your property - you should have been sure that the landlord had a new address for you to send you either your deposit refund or a written accounting for how much and why. The landlord had 31 days from when you restored possession to him to either refund the security deposit in full or provide you a written accounting for why and how much he was retaining. IF you believe that he did not comply with that 31 day requirement, or improperly withheld refunding part or all of your deposit, you may be entitled to recover twice the amount not timely accounted for or which was wrongfully accounted for. He is supposed to keep your property safe and available for your claiming and removing, at least until he complies with ORS 90.425 - the abandoned property statute. Essentially, he cannot legally dispose of your property at least until after he complies with the requirements of providing you at least 8 days written notice to contact him to make an appointment to retrieve your property and an additional 15 days to actually remove that property. If he does give that notice, and you do not remove everything within those time deadlines, then he is free to dispose of your property. If you believe these guidelines have been broken, consider reviewing everything with a local landlord-tenant attorney.

Katherine Goodman agrees with this answer

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