Following the Minnesota Attorney General’s announcement of the State’s civil suit in Hennepin County District Court this month, Mid-Minnesota Legal Aid (MMLA) has filed a class action lawsuit on behalf of the current tenants of Steven Meldahl. As with the AG’s suit, MMLA alleges that Meldahl, landlord of twenty five properties in North Minneapolis, charges excessive rents and late fees beyond the statutory cap, aggressively files evictions on tenants that get behind in rent, fails to make repairs to his properties, coerces tenants to repair his properties and retaliates or evicts tenants that call city housing inspectors.
Speaking with Insight News, Mark Iris, staff attorney with Mid-Minnesota Legal Aid, said “Meldahl has been profiting off the backs of low-income tenants in North Minneapolis. These are people that already have few options and even fewer resources to assert their rights to safe and healthy housing. Our lawsuit is merely an attempt to restore Meldahl's tenants with the fundamental housing rights that all other tenants in Minnesota are afforded: raising children in a home without exposure to mold or lead, being able to call on maintenance to have working appliances, paying a consistent and predictable monthly rent. We are optimistic that both lawsuits will have a direct impact on improving the housing conditions of Meldahl's tenants and indirectly benefit tenants across the state.” Read more in the Star Tribune.