§ 55-248.33. Remedies for absence, nonuse and abandonment.
If the rental agreement requires the tenant to give notice to the landlord of an anticipated extended absence in excess of seven days and the tenant fails to do so, the landlord may recover actual damages from the tenant. During any absence of the tenant in excess of seven days, the landlord may enter the dwelling unit at times reasonably necessary to protect his possessions and property. The rental agreement is deemed to be terminated by the landlord as of the date of abandonment by the tenant. If the landlord cannot determine whether the premises have been abandoned by the tenant, the landlord shall serve written notice on the tenant in accordance with § 55-248.6 requiring the tenant to give written notice to the landlord within seven days that the tenant intends to remain in occupancy of the premises. If the tenant gives such written notice to the landlord, or if the landlord otherwise determines that the tenant remains in occupancy of the premises, the landlord shall not treat the premises as having been abandoned. Unless the landlord receives written notice from the tenant or otherwise determines that the tenant remains in occupancy of the premises, upon the expiration of seven days from the date of the landlord's notice to the tenant, there shall be rebuttable presumption that the premises have been abandoned by the tenant and the rental agreement shall be deemed to terminate on that date. The landlord shall mitigate damages in accordance with § 55-248.35.
1974, c. 680; 2002, c. 761.