Can we file a small claim for an occupant’s unpaid power bill?

UPDATED: Feb 21, 2012

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Can we file a small claim for an occupant’s unpaid power bill?

We recently had a person staying in a trailer we own who moved out and left us with a $400 electric bill. The bill is still in our name and there is no lease however we can prove through witnesses that he did indeed live there and he has paid on the power bill in the past. Do we have a small claim?

Asked on February 21, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Washington


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

If your former tenant who occupied a trailer that you owned under an "oral lease" or a lease implied by conduct owes you a $400 power bill, you can pay the bill and then sue this person in small claims court for the amount paid on his behalf.

From what you have written, you have a legal and factual basis for a small claim action against the former tenant.

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