Is there any way to kick a roommate out whom we have signed a 1 year lease with?

We are renting a home on a 1 year lease, all of our names are signed on the lease. I live with 2 other girls (girl #1, and girl #2). Girl #1 and I want to kick our roommate out. We have told her that we don’t want her here, and that we want nothing to do with her. I called our landlord, and she said that we either need to all 3 agree on a new leaseor get an attorney. I’m not sure if an attorney can really help or not, hence why I’m hoping you can give me some kind of advice. Girl #2, whom we want out, does not want to move out. She has been abusing her prescription medication and is acting like a sociopath (looked up the warning signs on-line, and she fits many characteristics). We’ve sincerely tried to help her but she won’t listen or believe that she needs to change anything, even though she is so unhappy. There was an incident the other day where she was heavily sedated, and threatened to take all her medication to kill herself. Long story short, we called the police and they escorted her to the hospital to make sure she was safe. Technically, she has not done anything that’s breaking the lease contract. She lost her job 2 weeks after we moved in and is still unemployed. If she doesn’t pay her portion of the rent, am I responsible for her portion? If she doesn’t, would that be a solid reason to kick her out?

Asked on October 22, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Michigan

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

I am sorry for your situation and for your room mate as well.  Is there no family that you can call on her behalf?  This is much more serious than a landlord tenant issue but I do understand that to you this is a pressing matter.  Your landlord may e right here: you need some one to read your lease agreement and give you advice.  I am betting that even though you have all signed the lease as individuals, you are "jointly and severally" liable under the contract.  That mans that yes, you would still be responsible for the rent under the lease.  And your recourse would be to sue her based upon the default and your payment.  The landlord probably told you that you all have to agree because if she is taken off the lease you will be breaking the contract and that has to be voided in writing and signed by all of you with the landlord and the landlord has to agree to signing a new one.  The basis for "kicking her out" is in the lease agreement and the law.  Seek legal help.


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