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Does Landlord's Lack of Mayor's Permit invalidate lease contract?

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Arresto Menor
Hi. I am a tenant. I have a landlord. Sand spewing from showerhead and dirty water coming out of all pipes. I withheld rent because landlord ignored issue for 6 months. Eventually BACIWA reported him to Manila for not having a deep well water license.

First he turned off the electricity. Then, two days after the BACIWA officials determined he had no deep well water license and sent their report to Manila, he turned off my water too. Amazing, considering that the deep well water doesn't cost him anything and there is no provision for water shutoff in the lease.

Then I went to the permits section of my local city government and found out that a) he hasn't paid 2013 property taxes; and b) hasn't paid his mayor's permit for either 2012 and 2013.

The date of our lease contract was November 28, 2012.

Doesn't the lack of a mayor's permit make the lease contract inexistent from the very beginning? And can't I sue him for a full refund of the monthly rentals and security deposits that I have already paid? Plus various types of damages for what I presume to be the illegal electricity and water shutoffs?

And can a Municipal Trial Court rescind contracts? I read someplace that only a Peace Court can do that in the Philippines. Do Peace Courts even exist still in the Philippines? What type of court or courts can rescind contracts in the Philippines in 2013?

Thanks! Smile

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Reclusion Perpetua
Do you mean you WANT the contract to be rescind?
I see it as this:
For the LANDLORD his missing permits CAN'T be a reason to break the contract if YOU want to keep it,
but for YOU it can be a good argument if you want the contract to be get rid of it.
But I suppose there are agreements in the contract, which your landlord have BROKEN, so in estafa point of view it can be better for you to NOT get the contract to be rescind retroactive.

The missing tax is between the landlord and the tax section, so I don't believe that fact is worth much for you. In OPPOSITE it can be BAD for you, because it's a sign your landlord is short of capacity to pay you if you winn the case... Sad

I don't know about Peace court. I thought they ended when war ended Smile
Baranggay/municipaly can tell you if you can get such case handled by them. I believe so.

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The lack of permit from the local government will have no effect on the effectivity of an existing lease contract. This contract is between you and your land lord, since the contract is the very law that regulates the relationship of the contracting parties(you and land lord), you are bounded to comply with oblgations stipulated in the lease contract.

In the same token, your land lord too has an obligation to comply with. This is where your grievances against the current state of your unit comes to fore. It is the obligation of your land lord to make sure that the apartment unit will be in a habitable condition. There are rights provided for you by law to remedy this matter.

Please consider the following provision of the Civil Code on Lease Contracts for your guidance, to wit:

Art. 1654. The lessor is obliged:

(1) To deliver the thing which is the object of the contract in such a condition as to render it fit for the use intended;

(2) To make on the same during the lease all the necessary repairs in order to keep it suitable for the use to which it has been devoted, unless there is a stipulation to the contrary;

(3) To maintain the lessee in the peaceful and adequate enjoyment of the lease for the entire duration of the contract

Art. 1658. The lessee may suspend the payment of the rent in case the lessor fails to make the necessary repairs or to maintain the lessee in peaceful and adequate enjoyment of the property leased. (n)

Art. 1659. If the lessor or the lessee should not comply with the obligations set forth in Articles 1654 and 1657, the aggrieved party may ask for the rescission of the contract and indemnification for damages, or only the latter, allowing the contract to remain in force. (1556)

Art. 1660. If a dwelling place or any other building intended for human habitation is in such a condition that its use brings imminent and serious danger to life or health, the lessee may terminate the lease at once by notifying the lessor, even if at the time the contract was perfected the former knew of the dangerous condition or waived the right to rescind the lease on account of this condition. (n)

Art. 1662. If during the lease it should become necessary to make some urgent repairs upon the thing leased, which cannot be deferred until the termination of the lease, the lessee is obliged to tolerate the work, although it may be very annoying to him, and although during the same, he may be deprived of a part of the premises.

If the repairs last more than forty days the rent shall be reduced in proportion to the time – including the first forty days – and the part of the property of which the lessee has been deprived.

When the work is of such a nature that the portion which the lessee and his family need for their dwelling becomes uninhabitable, he may rescind the contract if the main purpose of the lease is to provide a dwelling place for the lessee

Art. 1663. The lessee is obliged to bring to the knowledge of the proprietor, within the shortest possible time, every usurpation or untoward act which any third person may have committed or may be openly preparing to carry out upon the thing leased.

He is also obliged to advise the owner, with the same urgency, of the need of all repairs included in No. 2 of Article 1654.

In both cases the lessee shall be liable for the damages which, through his negligence, may be suffered by the proprietor.

If the lessor fails to make urgent repairs, the lessee, in order to avoid an imminent danger, may order the repairs at the lessor’s cost.

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Arresto Menor
Thanks for the replies. Any other views are welcome too.

When you go to court for landlord-tenant disputes, do you HAVE to hire an attorney? Or can you self-represent yourself?

I live on the island of Negros Occidental.

Thanks. Smile

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