My daughter and I are both on a 12 month lease. She recently left all of her furniture, abandoned the premises, and won’t pay her share.

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My daughter and I are both on a 12 month lease. She recently left all of her furniture, abandoned the premises, and won’t pay her share.

My daughter abandoned our rental townhouse about 2 weeks ago. She left all of her belongings, her pets, and turned off all of our utilities that were in her name. I want her off of the lease (which we are both on) and want to have leverage to force her to get her belongings out of this property. She wont willingly get off the lease because she doesnt have a place for all of her furiniture and wants to leave it here. I would like to know if i have rights to the furniture or any legal recourse to get her off of the lease, because once that is done I know I will have rights to the furniture.

Asked on June 3, 2009 under Real Estate Law, Florida

Answers:

B. B., Member, New Jersey Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

What a mess.  There is one (perhaps two or three, but not necessarily) right way to deal with this, and a bunch of wrong ways.  Exactly what will work, in what order, will depend on all of the unique facts of your case, and possibly on variations in the law in your state (where I don't practice).  One place you can find a qualified attorney in your area, to give you reliable advice, is our website, http://attorneypages.com

It may be possible, for example, to move your daughter's things into a rented storage unit, pay the first month's storage charge in your daughter's name, and send her a certified letter telling her the contact information, and what happens to the stuff after the month runs out is her problem.  There may be some steps you need to take before this, though.  Don't guess -- a mistake can get very expensive, very quickly.


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