Montana Landlord Retaliation Laws

Montana Landlord Retaliation Laws

Last Updated: May 27, 2023

Tenant Protected Actions
  • Health/Safety Complaints to Gov’t
  • Complaints to Landlord
  • Joining/Starting Tenants’ Organization
  • Enforcing Lawful Rights
Landlord Retaliatory Actions
  • Raising Rent
  • Decreasing Services
  • Filing/Threatening Eviction or Lawsuit
Penalties for Retaliation
  • End Lease
  • Repossess Property
  • Sue for Damages

When Is It Illegal for Landlords to Retaliate in Montana?

It’s illegal for Montana landlords to retaliate with raised rent, reduced services, or threatened eviction against tenants who have taken one of the following protected actions in the past six months:

  • Complaining to the landlord or the government about failure to maintain the property.
  • Participating in a tenant organization.
  • Pursuing rights or remedies given by the law or lease.

The law allows an exception when the landlord can prove a non-retaliatory, good-faith reason for the alleged retaliatory action. For example, a landlord can evict a tenant who is damaging the property, even if the tenant reports the damage to code compliance authorities.

What Can Tenants Do in Response in Montana?

Montana tenants can respond to landlord retaliation by suing for quiet enjoyment of the property. The tenant might also end the rental agreement. In either case, the tenant can recover court costs and attorney fees, plus either triple the monthly rent or triple the costs associated with the retaliation (whichever is greater).