Below you will find a variety of resources and forms that provide helpful information on how to address landlord-tenant problems. You will also find details on how to seek assistance or aid from a lawyer, if necessary.
Get Help and Learn Your Rights: Renter Defender
When renting property, it is important to know your rights and options before you move in, while you're living there, and when you move out. During your tenancy, landlord-tenant disputes can be caused by many different issues including lease agreements, repairs, rent, eviction, and more. Knowing your rights will help you handle these issues more easily.
In this pamphlet from Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee & the Cumberlands, you can find helpful information about the rights you have when you are renting property. You can reference this resource if you live in the following counties: Anderson, Blount, Bradley, Davidson, Hamilton, Knox, Madison, Maury, Montgomery, Rutherford, Sevier, Shelby, Sullivan, Sumner, Washington, Williamson and Wilson.
For all Tennessee counties not listed above, you can reference the above pamphlet to learn more about rural renter rights.
Can I be evicted during Coronavirus?
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), announced a temporary halt to residential evictions to prevent the further spread of COVID-19. This Order is effective from September 4, 2020 through December 31, 2020.
Click on the link below to learn more about this eviction moratorium and to access the declaration form you'll need to provide to your landlord to prevent eviction.
Need assistance paying for your utilities?
Click on the link below to learn about financial assistance that's available to low income households for their home energy costs.
The following booklets from Southeast Tennessee Legal Services can help if you are involved in a dispute with your landlord in Tennessee.
If your landlord has filed a detainer action against you, reference this resource to learn more about what you can do.
If you are a tenant and looking to sue your landlord for the cost of repairs or the return of a security deposit, use this resource for more details on how to do so.
If you are a landlord and your tenant has breached the lease or has not paid rent on time, learn more about how to file a detainer action so that the court can restore possession to you.
The following videos from Legal Aid of East Tennessee provides tips on what tenants should do before moving into a new property. This information is available in both English and Spanish.
At this link, you can find approved court forms for all counties within Tennessee.
If you are in Tennessee, the website, Free Legal Answers, allows you to ask a lawyer for help with a legal issue at no cost. It is fast and easy, and all you need is a computer. This is a FREE service for people who cannot afford a lawyer.
How it works:
- You will answer a few questions to see if you qualify for their service. If you qualify, you will have the option to create an account.
- If you are eligible, you can ask their volunteer attorneys your non-criminal question.
- Once your question receives a response, you will get an email. You will need to sign into the website to read your response and ask any additional questions.
Visit https://tn.freelegalanswers.org/ to sign up.
The Statewide Directory provides information regarding Legal Aid Attorneys and other agencies by county in Tennessee.
Still need assistance? Please speak to a librarian at your local library – they may have additional resources to assist you.