Am I legaly obliged to pay rent if thelease isn’t in my name?

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Am I legaly obliged to pay rent if thelease isn’t in my name?

I was living with my ex-girlfriend in an apartment in her name. She moved out after 3 months, but we remained a couple. I broke up with her months later and she evicted me with no notice. I told her I would pay the last month rent if she just left me alone. She agreed and I wrote a piece of paper agreeing to it. Soon after she said she is suing me for emotional damage. Do I still have to pay the rent even if I don’t live there and the apartment lease is only in her name?

Asked on September 16, 2010 under Real Estate Law, Michigan

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

With the fact as you have written them here then probably not to the landlord.  You have no contract with the landlord.  Your ex has.  Does it allow her to sublet?  Would the piece of paper be considered a "sublet" lease which would be a legally binding contract?  Those are the questions that need to be addressed.  In the meantime her landlord will go after her and not you if you are not on the lease.  They may try and sue you but really they can not.  Your ex, though, may bring you in to the suit or go after you based upon the writing you claim.  This seems like quite a mess.  It may be a good idea to resolve it all out of court.  Good luck.


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