Section 521-64 of Hawaii law covers repairs by landlords
The Landlord-Tenant Code states that an absentee landlord shall designate an agent to act on the landlord's behalf. The agent must reside on the same island as the rental unit. I have been trying unsuccessfully to contact the owners of my apartment for weeks for plumbing repairs. They apparently are out of state. Are they derelict in their duties by being unreachable for 19 days at last count? If so, what recourse do I have? Also, our mailboxes are all falling apart and my box cannot be padlocked. Any mail is accessible to anyone. Are the apartment building owners responsible for providing secure mail boxes?
Answer: You've since informed us that your landlords were on vacation and not living off island, in which case, they are not required to designate an agent.
The state's Landlord-Tenant Code says that a landlord who "resides off the island from where the rental unit is located shall designate an agent residing on the same island where the unit is located."
Regarding repairs of "minor defects," the state Office of Consumer Protection said you should follow remedies laid out in Section 521-64 of the Hawaii Revised Statutes.
That section says the landlord is responsible for addressing conditions that constitute health or safety violations, specifying what the notification procedures are, how soon repairs should be made and who's responsible for payment.
However, a tenant can't make repairs at the landlord's expense if the tenant caused the damage.
For a better understanding of the law, you are advised to call the Landlord-Tenant hot line at 586-2634.
Regarding mailboxes, the Office of Consumer Protection advises talking to the resident manager. Mailboxes located in a common area might belong to the building's association.
If owned by a landlord, they might be considered "facilities" and repaired under Sec. 521-64(g) of the Hawaii Revised Statutes, although Consumer Protection says they also might not be considered "facilities." Again, call the hotline for more information.
Q: I tried calling TheBus Lost and Found Department, but it has been more than a month and it doesn't look like they'll answer my call. So perhaps you can find out for me: I lost my senior bus pass so paid to replace the lost portion. Then I found my pass, so now I have two. I don't expect a refund, but I just wanted to know if they give any credit towards the next bus pass if we return the duplicate card.
A: Return the replacement senior bus pass to TheBus Pass office and you will be refunded the $10 you paid for the replacement pass.
TheBus officials weren't able to find a record of your call.
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