State Codes and Statutes

State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > North-carolina > Chapter_42 > GS_42-37_1


Retaliatory Eviction.

§ 42‑37.1.  Defense ofretaliatory eviction.

(a)        It is the publicpolicy of the State of North Carolina to protect tenants and other personswhose residence in the household is explicitly or implicitly known to thelandlord, who seek to exercise their rights to decent, safe, and sanitaryhousing. Therefore, the following activities of such persons are protected bylaw:

(1)        A good faithcomplaint or request for repairs to the landlord, his employee, or his agentabout conditions or defects in the premises that the landlord is obligated torepair under G.S. 42‑42;

(2)        A good faithcomplaint to a government agency about a landlord's alleged violation of anyhealth or safety law, or any regulation, code, ordinance, or State or federallaw that regulates premises used for dwelling purposes;

(3)        A governmentauthority's issuance of a formal complaint to a landlord concerning premisesrented by a tenant;

(4)        A good faith attemptto exercise, secure or enforce any rights existing under a valid lease orrental agreement or under State or federal law; or

(5)        A good faith attemptto organize, join, or become otherwise involved with, any organizationpromoting or enforcing tenants' rights.

(b)        In an action forsummary ejectment pursuant to G.S. 42‑26, a tenant may raise theaffirmative defense of retaliatory eviction and may present evidence that thelandlord's action is substantially in response to the occurrence within 12months of the filing of such action of one or more of the protected actsdescribed in subsection (a) of this section.

(c)        Notwithstandingsubsections (a) and (b) of this section, a landlord may prevail in an actionfor summary ejectment if:

(1)        The tenant breachedthe covenant to pay rent or any other substantial covenant of the lease forwhich the tenant may be evicted, and such breach is the reason for theeviction; or

(2)        In a case of atenancy for a definite period of time where the tenant has no option to renewthe lease, the tenant holds over after expiration of the term; or

(3)        The violation ofG.S. 42‑42 complained of was caused primarily by the willful or negligentconduct of the tenant, member of the tenant's household, or their guests orinvitees; or

(4)        Compliance with theapplicable building or housing code requires demolition or major alteration orremodeling that cannot be accomplished without completely displacing thetenant's household; or

(5)        The landlord seeksto recover possession on the basis of a good faith notice to quit the premises,which notice was delivered prior to the occurrence of any of the activitiesprotected by subsections (a) and (b) of this section; or

(6)        The landlord seeksin good faith to recover possession at the end of the tenant's term for use asthe landlord's own abode, to demolish or make major alterations or remodelingof the dwelling unit in a manner that requires the complete displacement of thetenant's household, or to terminate for at least six months the use of theproperty as a rental dwelling unit. (1979, c. 807.)