Car Lease Swap and transfer of liability to the new lessee

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Car Lease Swap and transfer of liability to the new lessee

I am trying to get out of my lease and for that I contacted the leasing company. They are okay with the transfer and will transfer the lease to the new lessee but they will keep me as a guarantor on the agreement. That means in case the new lessee defaults they will come after me or if the new lessee damages the car and refuses to pay again I will be responsible. Now the question is can I sign a agreement between myself and the new lessee stating and outlining that all the liabilities have been transferred and the new lessee after the lease is transferred will be responsible for the car payments, excess mileage, or damage etc. Will this kind of a document be valid in court of law in case the leasing company come after me? Can I hold the new lessee responsible in the agreement between myself and him/her as the leasing company will simply come to me if the new lessee stops paying?

Asked on June 18, 2017 under Business Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

No, you cannot transfer your obligations under the guaranty(ies) to the new lessee, because you do not have the right to effectively change the terms of your agreement with the leasing company and deprive them of your guaranty, which they had sought as a condition of this and which you agreed to. You can sign an agreement with the new lessee that he/she will *reimburse* you for any amounts you have to pay under your guaranty(ies), but the leasing company can still go after you for the money--you'd then have to go after the new lessee to seek reimbursement. This means you'd have to pay the leasing company while hoping the new lessee has the funds to then repay you.

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