I'm asking you for help today to help my girlfriend.

Context: she moved 6 months ago to an apartment. The price is reasonable and the location too. Very quickly, she noticed a problem: her adjoining neighbor is crazy.

My girlfriend's room overlooks one of the rooms in his apartment. He knocks on the walls when she makes the slightest noise (he knocks so hard that we hear things between the walls falling), uses low-pitch noise to prevent her from sleeping and insults any person who dares to approach his door. In addition, he installed a camera overlooking the front door but also that of my girlfriend; he can therefore film the people coming and going and listen to the conversations (the walls are thin).

It's consuming her life. Unfortunately, there is nothing I can do to counter it. This man is a ghost: no name on his door or on his mailbox. He never leaves his house, and only two people in the building have seen him: he's supposedly stocky, in his forties, and hairy. He's said to have tagged swastikas in the elevators to take revenge on a Jewish neighbor, threw engine oil on the stairs of the building on New Year's Eve, and more. But we have no evidence of anything except the camera installed in front of his house.

Unfortunately, French justice stipulates that the trustee of the building has to file a complaint for this camera and not my girlfriend.

How to get through to him? He encroaches on her private life, knows all her movements via the camera, and prevents her from sleeping. The situation is critical – we can't let him act with impunity.

Help us.

  • This sounds pretty serious, have you talked to the trustee of the building yet? (Some of these even seem serious enough to bring in police but I'm not sure if that's the case in France..) Also - might be a translation error, what do you mean by "meg of ultrasound to prevent her from sleeping", is he deliberately being noisy so she can't sleep? – Em C Dec 16 '19 at 22:55
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    Any possibility your gf could move? – DaveG Dec 16 '19 at 23:25
  • I don't know about any IPS solution in this case, but there's definitely a legal step-by-step process that you might want to think of... – OldPadawan Dec 17 '19 at 7:29

There is one post in particular that I would suggest reading as it also revolves around an impossible neighbour equally impossible to reach. It contains very good first (and second and third and fourth...) steps in its body as well as possible alternatives in its answers.

After every reasonable interpersonal solution mentioned there failed, I would recommend step-by-step escalation until the problem is solved.

There may be no bylaws in France but there are Syndicats de locataires and Associations de défense des locataires which might have helpful advice for you. Depending on their competences and authority, they may even be able to take legal steps for you.

Check with the local authorities if they can engage in any form of action. If only the trustee of the building can file a complaint, then inform him (what you should already have done) and ask him to take action. Make sure you get feedback on a regular basis so that things keep moving forward.

Make yourself, or rather your girlfriend, ready to move (at least psychologically). At the end of the day, it is your time, your energy, your money and your health that may uselessly go down the drain. If you kept your landlord informed of all problems and steps taken against them and kept traces of it, you could move out on a short notice without losing money.
That will in turn send an incentive to the landlord and - even though it didn't solve your problem - that may help future tenants. No landlord wants to see people come and go every 6 months.

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