Texas Property Code § 92.0563. Tenant's Judicial Remedies

(a) A tenant's judicial remedies under Section 92.056 shall include:

(1) an order directing the landlord to take reasonable action to repair or remedy the condition;

(2) an order reducing the tenant's rent, from the date of the first repair notice, in proportion to the reduced rental value resulting from the condition until the condition is repaired or remedied;

(3) a judgment against the landlord for a civil penalty of one month's rent plus $500;

(4) a judgment against the landlord for the amount of the tenant's actual damages;  and

(5) court costs and attorney's fees, excluding any attorney's fees for a cause of action for damages relating to a personal injury.

(b) A landlord who knowingly violates Section 92.006 by contracting orally or in writing with a tenant to waive the landlord's duty to repair under this subchapter shall be liable to the tenant for actual damages, a civil penalty of one month's rent plus $2,000, and reasonable attorney's fees.  For purposes of this subsection, there shall be a rebuttable presumption that the landlord acted without knowledge of the violation.  The tenant shall have the burden of pleading and proving a knowing violation.  If the lease is in writing and is not in violation of Section 92.006 , the tenant's proof of a knowing violation must be clear and convincing.  A mutual agreement for tenant repair under Subsection (g) of Section 92.0561 is not a violation of Section 92.006 .

(c) The justice, county, and district courts have concurrent jurisdiction in an action under Subsection (a).

(d) Repealed by S.Ct.. TX Order 13-0006 (Docket No. 13-9049).

(e) A justice court may not award a judgment under this section, including an order of repair, that exceeds $10,000, excluding interest and costs of court.

(f) An appeal of a judgment of a justice court under this section takes precedence in county court and may be held at any time after the eighth day after the date the transcript is filed in the county court.  An owner of real property who files a notice of appeal of a judgment of a justice court to the county court perfects the owner's appeal and stays the effect of the judgment without the necessity of posting an appeal bond.


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