Paul Bernstein, Attorney at Law
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Paul Bernstein, Attorney at Law

Comments on the RLTO IndexTHE CHICAGO RESIDENTIAL LANDLORD
AND TENANT ORDINANCE (RLTO)

SELECTED PROVISIONS AND COMMENTARY Navigate Next and Previous Ordinance

By: Paul Bernstein, Attorney at Law

Section 5-12-030 - Definitions. Whenever used in this Chapter, the following words and phrases shall have the following meanings:

(a) "Dwelling unit" means a structure or the part of a structure that is used as a home, residence or sleeping place by one or more persons who maintain a household together with the common areas, land and appurtenant buildings thereto, and all housing services, privileges, furnishings and facilities supplied in connection with the use or occupancy thereof, including garage and parking facilities.

(b) "Landlord" means the owner, agent, lessor or sublessor, or the successor in interest of any of them, of a dwelling unit or the building of which it is part.

Commentary: Notice the very broad scope of the definition of 'Landlord'. Since damages under the RLTO are assessed against the 'landlord', agents of the owner are also subject to liability.

(c) "Owner" means one or more persons, jointly or severally, in whom is vested all or part of the legal title to property, or all or part of the beneficial ownership and a right to present use and enjoyment of the premises, including a mortgagee in possession.

(d) "Person" means an individual, corporation, government, governmental subdivision or agency, business trust, estate, trust, partnership or association or any other legal or commercial entity.

(e) "Premises" means the dwelling unit and the structure of which it is a part, and facilities and appurtenances therein, and grounds, areas and facilities held out for the use of tenants.

(f) "Rent" means any consideration, including any payment, bonus, benefits or gratuity, demanded or received by a landlord for or in connection with the use or occupancy of a dwelling unit.

(g) "Rental agreement" means all written or oral agreements embodying the terms and conditions concerning the use and occupancy of a dwelling unit by a tenant.

(h) "Tenant" means a person entitled by written or oral agreement, subtenancy approved by the landlord or by sufferance, to occupy a dwelling unit to the exclusion of others.