Conn. Gen. Stat. § 47a-20

Current with legislation from 2024 effective through May 11, 2024.
Section 47a-20 - (Formerly Sec. 19-375a). Retaliatory action by landlord prohibited

A landlord shall not maintain an action or proceeding against a tenant to recover possession of a dwelling unit, demand an increase in rent from the tenant, or decrease the services to which the tenant has been entitled within six months after:

(1) The tenant has in good faith attempted to remedy by any lawful means, including contacting officials of the state or of any town, city or borough or public agency or filing a complaint with a fair rent commission, any condition constituting a violation of any provisions of chapter 368o, or of chapter 412, or of any other state statute or regulation, or of the housing and health ordinances of the municipality wherein the premises which are the subject of the complaint lie;
(2) any municipal agency or official has filed a notice, complaint or order regarding such a violation;
(3) the tenant has in good faith requested the landlord to make repairs;
(4) the tenant has in good faith instituted an action under subsections (a) to (i), inclusive, of section 47a-14h; or
(5) the tenant has organized or become a member of a tenants' union.

Conn. Gen. Stat. § 47a-20

(1971, P.A. 852, S. 1-4; 1972, P.A. 160, S. 5; 186, S. 13; P.A. 76-95, S. 19, 27; 76-435, S. 75, 82; P.A. 79-571, S. 17; P.A. 83-510, S. 6, 9.)

Annotation to former section 19-375a: Defense of retaliatory eviction not available in summary process action for nonpayment of rent. 34 CS 594. Annotations to present section: Cited. 217 Conn. 313. Cited. 4 Conn.App. 608. Subdiv. (3): Protection of statute not invoked unless repair requested is necessary to maintain premises in a fit and habitable state. 16 Conn.App. 444. Cited. 32 Conn.App. 133; 45 Conn.App. 46. Sec. 47a-20a contains four exclusive grounds by which a landlord may rebut a presumption of retaliation under this section and because landlord did not prove at least one of those four grounds, he did not rebut the presumption of retaliation under this section. 91 CA 142. Language does not confer a private cause of action. 98 CA 147. Cited. 35 Conn.Supp. 233. Retaliatory eviction defense is not a right given to tenants, rather a limitation upon remedies of landlord intended to protect tenant who had complained of housing code violation; tenant's request to landlord to unclog bathtub drain does not constitute a repair sufficient to raise the presumption of retaliatory defense; under Subdiv. (3), "repairs" means repairs of substantial code violations; repairs required to conform a dwelling unit to basic structural, mechanical and housing code regulations are the types contemplated to raise presumption of retaliatory defense; establishment of prima facie case by tenant gives rise to presumption of retaliatory action by landlord; prima facie case results when tenant has produced sufficient evidence to bring himself within one or more of the specified acts; presumption of retaliatory action is rebuttable; to rebut, landlord is required to establish legitimate interest in the eviction; landlord has burden of producing substantial countervailing evidence and of proving facts which fairly put in issue the presumed fact; Subdiv. (1) contains language nearly identical to that of Sec. 47a-33; Subdiv. (1) and three others in section are intended to trigger defense of retaliatory action. Id., 261. Cited. 36 Conn.Supp. 47; 38 CS 370; Id., 683; 40 Conn.Supp. 470.

See Sec. 7-148f re penalty for violation of order of rent reduction or rent suspension. See Sec. 47a-33 re defense that action is retaliatory.