Can I force my roommate to leave for failing to meet the rent requirements on time?

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Can I force my roommate to leave for failing to meet the rent requirements on time?

I currently share an apartment with my roommate, and lately she has gotten very behind on rent payment. So much so that I can’t compensate and am currently unable to pay next months rent. She currently owes me her half of an entire months rent already and it will be going on 2 if it overlaps into next month. She is also showing little to no signs of cooperation on the matter. Since her name is not on the lease, do I reserve the right to ask her to leave? Am I entitled to any of the money she owes me? How do I go about asking her to leave and what should I do if she is uncooperative?

Asked on November 16, 2011 under Real Estate Law, New York

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Okay so I am a bit worried for you here.  If she is not on the lease with the landlord I am afraid that you are in violation of the lease agreement yourself by having a sub tenant in the apartment.  Do you have a lease or agreement with her that could be seen as a lease agreement? If you do not have a written agreement then you have an oral agreement and you need to actually evict her as a sub-tenant.  This is not an easy endeavor and if you mess it up as to service, etc., the whole action could be thrown out.  Some landlord tenant courts have booklets for pro- se (on their own) landlords so go and take a look.  When you sue to evict her you can ask for back rent.  Good luck. 


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