Is it legal that a company only billed1 of4 people who broke a lease?

UPDATED: Mar 10, 2012

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

UPDATED: Mar 10, 2012Fact Checked

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Is it legal that a company only billed1 of4 people who broke a lease?

My boyfriend and I moved out before the other 2 decided to break the lease. I’m the only 1 of the 4 that signed the lease that is receiving a massive bill now; it’s affected my credit any chances of me or my boyfriend of moving somewhere.

Asked on March 10, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Rhode Island


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Yes, it is legal. When multiple people are on a lease, they each can be held responsible for the total amount due under it (though altogether, the landlord cannot collect more than the total due under the lease). The landlord has the option of which person(s) to seek compensation from for breaking the lease--he can legally look to get all the money from one person, and will frequently go after whoever appears to be most solvent (e.g. why bother suing someone who has no money) or most easily sued (some people may be harder to locate or reach, for example). 

However, you in turn could potentially sue your roommates for their contributions--while the landlord doesn't have to seek money from them, you are allowed to seek reimbursement of the portions they would have paid. You should consult with an attorney about doing this.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption