Tennessee Code Title 66. Property § 66-28-514
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(a) Except as provided in this section, a landlord may not retaliate by increasing rent or decreasing services or by bringing or threatening to bring an action for possession because the tenant:
(1) Has complained to the landlord of a violation under § 66-28-301 ; or
(2) Has made use of remedies provided under this chapter.
(b)(1) Notwithstanding subsection (a), a landlord may bring an action for possession if:
(A) The violation of the applicable building or housing code was caused primarily by lack of reasonable care by the tenant or other person in the tenant's household or upon the premises with the tenant's consent;
(B) The tenant is in default in rent; or
(C) Compliance with the applicable building or housing code requires alteration, remodeling, or demolition which would effectively deprive the tenant of use of the dwelling unit.
(2) The maintenance of the action does not release the landlord from liability under § 66-28-501(b) .
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