Wisconsin State Law Library

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Landlord / Tenant Law

Many Wisconsin residents live in rental housing. State law provides a legal framework for the relationship between landlords and tenants. Many disputes between landlords and tenants can be avoided if both parties understand their legal rights and responsibilities (Source: DATCP).

The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection (DATCP) handles consumer complaints between landlords and tenants, and includes landlord-tenant guides on their website.

The Tenant Resource Center, located in Dane County, has information on topics like security deposits, eviction, roommates, and more.

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Popular questions

Can I get rent help?

Use 211 Wisconsin to find rent assistance programs near you. The US Consumer Financial Protection Bureau also has a guide on how to find help with rent and paying bills.

How long does an eviction stay on WCCA (also known as CCAP)?

An eviction stays on WCCA between two years (dismissed) and ten years (after evicted/writ issued). Evictions due to foreclosure are not posted on WCCA.

I need to find an eviction notice form

Because everyone’s situation is different, the Library can’t advise you on what form you need.

You can learn about eviction notices on the Tenant Resource Center website, or see the eviction notice grid from the Milwaukee Justice Center. The library re-sells some landlord/tenant notice forms.

The Tenant Resource Center provides sample notices for ending a tenancy on their website.

Can my landlord increase the rent?

According to a WI Consumer Protection Bureau brochure on Tenants Rights and Responsibilities, "There are no state laws limiting the amount of a rent increase." The Consumer Protection Bureau also has a discussion of rent and mobile home leases online. Notice requirements vary depending on the type of lease. The Tenant Resource Center writes about rent increases in a 2023 blog post.

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Additional statutes, regulations & opinions may apply to your specific situation. Search the Wisconsin statutes & administrative code online.


County resources

Recommended links from our County Resources database:

Research links

Agencies & Organizations

  • Tenant Resource Center
    Includes information on security deposits, repairs, ending a lease, eviction, roommates, pets, carpet cleaning, discrimination, etc. Includes blog examining various rental issues.
  • WI Dept of Agriculture, Trade & Consumer Protection
  • Legal Tune Up (Lift Dane)
    Helps remove eligible eviction records from WCCA. Accesses public data to assist users with resolving some legal issues and directs people to the legal and employment services they may need or want.



Bed Bugs


Farm Rentals

FAQs & Guides


Hotels & Motels

  • Landlord Tenant guide (DATCP)
    Discusses the applicability of residential rental practices rules to hotels and motels.

Mobile Homes

Service Animals

Short Term Rentals

Utility Bills


WI Communities

County Resources

Recommended links from our County Resources database:

Legal Assistance

  • Community Advocates
    (414) 449-4777 Serving people in need of urgent help, victims of domestic violence, people living with mental illness, and people dealing with substance abuse. Services include assistance with housing, utilities, health care, SSI and disability, homelessness and mental illness, and family violence.
  • Eviction defense clinic
    Call 608-890-0678 or email eji@law.wisc.edu for help. Se habla español.
  • Eviction Defense Project
    Meets in room 406 of the Milwaukee County Courthouse on Mondays and Wednesdays starting at 12:30PM. Limited Capacity (First Come - First Served)
  • Eviction defense project
    Legal Action of Wisconsin's Eviction Defense Project (EDP) is court-based, FREE legal aid for low-income tenants who are facing eviction. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Dane County clinic is located at 744 Williamson St (same building as Ground Zero and El Dorado Grill). The office hours are Mondays, Tuesdays, and certain Fridays. Call the intake line to schedule an appointment: 855-947-2529.
  • LIFT Wisconsin
    Provides a legal tune up tool to search public data and help users resolve civil legal issues, fill out forms, and resolve issues with background check, criminal court records, and eviction court records.
  • Rental Housing Center
    Rent and utilities help for tenants, landlord/tenant dispute resolution, relocation assistance.
  • Tenant Resource Center (UW-Madison location)
    (608) 216-2321 For UW-Madison students. Provides student tenant education, problem resolution assistance, and no cost mediation services for housing issues.


Library books & articles

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