If my former tenants have stopped following the payment schedule we agreed to in mediation, what options do I have?

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If my former tenants have stopped following the payment schedule we agreed to in mediation, what options do I have?

My former tenants stopped paying their rent and I was forced to evict them. I took them to court and in court, they agree to mediation. At the mediation meeting, a schedule of payments was worked out. They have since split up as a couple and have stopped paying me. I have contact information on only one of them but she refused to call me back. What do I need to do to collect on this debt?

Asked on August 14, 2011 Hawaii

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If there was an agreement for payment to be made pursuant to a certain schedule, that agreement  is enforceable. If they have stopped paying per the agreement, there are three things you could do:

1) You may go to landlord-tenant court and evict them for breach of the agrement and non-payment of rent;

2) After they are evicted, you may take unpaid rent out of their security deposit (you can only do this when their tenancy is termianted or over);

3) You can sue them--including in small claims court, where you can represent yourself and do not need an attorney--for the money they owe  you; if you only know where one of them is, you may sue her for the whole amount (then let her try to cover the money from her former boyfriend/fiance/husband/etc.)


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