Washington Legal Roundup – Division I
Ashlee Rousey was the victim of domestic violence in her apartment. Her former partner and father of her child threw a rock through the window at her apartment. Ms. Rousey informed her landlord, Indigo Real Estate Services (Indigo). In response, Indigo tried to evict Ms. Rousey. That’s illegal. Ms. Rousey convinced the Indigo that it was a bad idea to try to evict her and they dismissed the eviction action.
Ms. Rousey was worried that the fact that she had been sued for eviction would make it difficult for her to rent again. She asked the court to take her name of the eviction documents, replacing it only with her initials, A.R. The court said no because the court’s are supposed to be open and public.
The Court of Appeals remanded the case and asked the trial court to consider whether protecting Ms. Rousey’s interest in keeping her name clear was outweighed by the public’s right to know that a landlord had tried to evict her.
Note to landlords: Know that the fallout from your wrongful attempts to evict a domestic violence victim can have consequences beyond your initial wrongful conduct.