Is it legal to break a lease if a family feels unsafe? 3 Answers as of February 27, 2014

I have been living in the same house for two years and I have seen meth lab busts near my home. I have had people from into my yard, attempt to break in, I have had people releasing my dogs and beating my dogs. We had an unstable neighbor threaten to kill us, and now we have these guys who moved in next to us that just make me very uncomfortable. They have traffic at all hours of the night, loud music, and yell when i ask them to please quiet their dogs. The older of the two will literally sit and stare me down when I am outside working on my flower beds. I feel very unsafe with him around. His friends come over on the weekends and they will all sit out there and watch me and my children. I have contacted the police, but with all the lab busts, and arrests around this area, I really feel in danger. I feel that it is unsafe for my family and I to be living here anymore.

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Stuart P Gelberg
Stuart P Gelberg | Stuart P Gelberg
Yes but expect the landlord to sue you and be prepared to defend yourself
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 2/27/2014
S. Joseph Schramm | Joseph Schramm
Needless to say, it seems that you feel that you are in a dangerous situation. If the situation is in anyway connected to the landlord ( e . g . he is renting to these other parties) you would probably have grounds to break your lease and find another place. If the landlord is not connected to the activities of the characters inhabiting the neighborhood then technically you are obligated to honor the terms of your lease. That said, you might wish to approach your landlord to see if he would release you.
Answer Applies to: Pennsylvania
Replied: 2/27/2014
Dessy & Dessy, a Professional Corporation | Ronald D. Dessy
In theory, your performance under a lease would be excused if, following notice, the landlord failed to remedy a breach of the covenant of quiet enjoyment. However, you are going to need some specific facts of serious misconduct, rather than simply "feeling unsafe".
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/26/2014
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