DeNardo v. Corneloup

A tenant sued his neighbor and landlord for secondhand cigarette smoke drifting into his apartment. On appeal, the court rejected all of the tenant’s claims, ruling that (1) the landlord did not breach the covenant of quiet enjoyment because there was no evidence that the landlord substantially disturbed the tenant’s use of his land; (2) there was no battery because the smoke did not intentionally contact the tenant; (3) the trespass claims failed because the tenant did not prove that the landlord should be liable for tenant conduct it could not control; and (4) the nuisance claim failed because the tenant did not demonstrate that a tenant’s cigar smoking was an ultrahazardous activity. Finally, the court rejected the tenant’s claim for retaliatory eviction (i.e., that he was evicted because he filed a lawsuit) because the tenant was behind on his rent and could not prove that his failure to pay rent was excused.