If my landlord does not give me the ability to put the electric bill in my name and is in a former tenants name, what should I do?

UPDATED: Jun 8, 2012

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If my landlord does not give me the ability to put the electric bill in my name and is in a former tenants name, what should I do?

My landlord’s son was the former tenant where I now live. The former tenant has a past due balance with the electric company. The electric company is telling me that I cannot put the bill into my name until the past due balance is paid. My landlord tells me that I have to work it out with his son, I have tried but his son is not cooperating with the agreement we made about the bill. The electric company wont even tell me the current charges I owe for last onth so I can at least pay my share and hopefully keep the electric on.

Asked on June 8, 2012 under Real Estate Law, New Jersey


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

I suggest that you have the electrical bill for the rental that you have placed in your landlord's name if he will not allow you to put it in your name. You are wise to not have the bill of the prior tenant assumed by you in his name that currently has a balance outstanding.

As leverage, you need to tell your landlord that when you rented the unit and agreed to pay for the electrical bill, implied in the agreement was the fact that you would be able to have the bill placed in your name without any problems. The unpaid electrical bill from the prior tenant is creating a problem for you.


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