Can I sue someone if I let them stay in my apartment until my lease was up but they did not pay the final months rent or power bill?

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Can I sue someone if I let them stay in my apartment until my lease was up but they did not pay the final months rent or power bill?

I let someone stay in my apartment so that I wouldn’t have to break my lease, They have not paid the final month’s rent, or power bill. Is it possible for the leasing company to sue me for letting someone else stay there?

Asked on April 10, 2012 under Real Estate Law, North Carolina

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If you were on the lease--that is, this  other person did not take over the lease (take "assignment" of it)--then you are still responsible to the landlord or leasing company for  all sums due under the lease, including rent and utilities. The landlord or leasing company can come after you for the money, and if you don't pay, it's your credit which will be damaged, and you who may be sued. You in turn could sue your subtenant (you became his or her landlord when you sublet to him or her--when you let someone stay in your apartment in exchange for rent, that's a sublet, even if you don't call it such) for any amounts he or she owes you for unpaid rent or otherwise.

If the other person did not sublet from you but actually took over your lease, so that you were no longer on the lease or the tenant, then that's the person from whom the landlord or leasing company should seek payment.


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