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To fellow sufferers: Do I need to get a lawyer?

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  1. Alicew234

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Fri Aug 16 2013 7:42:03
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    First let me say my landlord is all over this. They called a pest company (the one who does their lawns) and when I reacted badly to the suggestions made by that guy, they called another...one that will offer me options of treatment.

    Both of the technicians the rental office have consulted have told them that 1) bedbugs do not travel, they stay close to the source. One said that in ten years of dealing with bed bugs, he has only once found that they moved to the couch. 2) the only way bed bugs could be in someone else's apartment is if I "dragged stuff through the hallway". Therefore, they are only going to treat my apartment and not inspect or treat adjoining apartments unless the technician determines that they are entering my apartment from somewhere else. (Apparently, he has the ability to determine if they exiting or entering....so fascinating.)

    Anyway, they are being great and super co operative. However, she said I will be responsible for the costs of extermination. (that's not what MA law says) and she implied that if other people started having bed bugs they will most probably have entered through the front door because they fell off as I took out the trash.

    I am trying to be grateful to have such sweet and cooperative help with the but WTF? They don't travel? TWO guys are telling them that the bedbugs can determine the wall we share with the neighbors is a dividing line and only get into apartments through the front doors!

    I'm keeping my mouth shut . I have asked THREE times in writing to have the adjoining apartments inspected. If they aren't going to do this, these things are coming back and I'm not 1) living with bed bugs or 2) adding $800 every three months to the already too high rent.

    What do you guys think? Is consulting a lawyer a bit premature and over reactive? I appreciate the input.

  2. MyWorstFear

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Fri Aug 16 2013 10:41:40
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    Is there anyway you could give your landlord a copy of the FAQ's on this website? It sure doesn't sound like those PC companies your landlord found have any experience with bed bugs. If you have to pay for the extermination services yourself, contrary to MA law, then you ought to be able to choose your PC! Before hiring a lawyer at this point, I'd try to educate your landlord with the facts, and also steer the landlord to a PC that knows about bed bugs. I think if the landlord knows that HE is responsible for paying, and that by inspecting and or treating your neighboring apartments will possibly prevent the entire building from getting infested, he would be more open to listening to a PC experienced in dealing successfully with bed bugs.
    I'm sorry you are going through this.

  3. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Fri Aug 16 2013 12:38:28
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    Not sure a lawyer can force inspections of attached units. (Not even sure that's a MA law.)

    However, are you in Boston as your profile says?

    Because if you call the Boston Inspectional Services Division, and they confirm you have bed bugs and issue a violation to the landlord for this, they will require the landlord to inspect the ENTIRE building and treat ALL attached units (even though treating uninfested attached units would be overkill according to most experts):

    Bed Bug Inspection Orders

    We require written extermination reports within 14 days of a notice of violation, and prior to closing a case. We work with owners who have contracted licensed Pest Control Operators, who have treatments programs in place, and who provide written documentation on the treatment programs.

    Our standard bed bug notice of violation also requires that owners inspect all units in the dwelling, and they must treat all horizontally and vertically adjacent units to the infested unit(s).

    See the BISD website: http://www.cityofboston.gov/isd/housing/bb.asp

    I started and run the site but am "not an expert."

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