Landlord has forged my intials to extend my lease. What can I do?

I gave a 30 day notice to my landlord on a month to month rental and was told I had signed a year lease. I reviewed my 16 page copy of the lease and did not find anything pertaining to a year lease on it. When I contacted the real estate agent and told them this they offered to send another copy to which I said yes. This second copy I recived has a completely different first page than my original to which my initials have been forged.

Asked on April 13, 2016 under Real Estate Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

They cannot legally do this. If they forged your signature, you could void the lease, since it is not valid without your signature--contracts (and that's what a lease is: a contract) are only valid if both parties agree to them, with that agreement commonly being shown by a signature (or initials). Of course, if they are prepared to lie and it is a good forgery, it may be difficult to prove that's what happened, if they should take legal action against you: i.e. the law is on your side, but in the real world, you also have to consider the quality of the possible evidence or testimony against you, and the personalities of the people with whom you are dealing and the likelihood that they would commit perjury (lie) in court.


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