Is a landlord required to provide a copy of the lease to the tenant?

Question

Our rent is due at the first of every month, or so I thought upon agreeing to the lease. As the first month ends, my landlord claims that my rent is late and it was due on the 28th and won't give me a copy of the lease. Is this legal?

Answer

A lease agreement is a contract between the landlord and the tenant that sets forth the rights and responsibilities of both landlord and tenant. The lease allows the tenant to occupy and use the property for a specific period of time, in exchange for which the tenant pays a specified rent. The lease may set forth other duties and responsibilities of the landlord and tenant. Once the parties sign the lease, both are bound by its terms. In many states, the landlord is required to provide a signed copy of the lease to the tenant. Since this law depends on the state you reside in, please check your state's landlord and tenant laws. You may need to do a little digging; if you can’t find what you need, check with a local tenants’ rights organization.

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