Beware of Sending Notices via Email

August 22, 2013
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To save time and money, you may be tempted to send the owner notices by email, but you should check the notice section of your lease first. Many leases—particularly older ones—don't include email as a method that tenants and owners can use to send required notices. Instead, they require tenants and owners to send notice by, for example, certified or registered mail. If your lease doesn't permit you to send notices via email, you can try to get the owner to amend your lease to say that email notices are permitted.

However, even if your lease does permit you to send owners notices via email, you must check whether your state law permits you to do so. Your state law's notice requirements may differ from your lease's—in which case you must comply with your state's notice requirements.

Also, consider that, although you may be legally permitted to send notices via email, there are still reasons you may not want to do so. For instance, if you serve a renewal notice via email, you may not be able to prove that the owner actually received the notice—even if you request a return receipt. And receipt of the notice could become an issue in any subsequent lawsuit. Therefore, speak to your attorney before sending notices via email.