Can my roommate ask me to leave if I’m on the lease?

UPDATED: May 31, 2012

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Can my roommate ask me to leave if I’m on the lease?

I’ve been living with my roomate who is on the lease and his girlfriend who isn’t. We’ve been having some communication problems about having guests over and what not. The other day he went behind my back and talked to the realtor to see I could move out and get off the 1 year lease with a clean break. I do not want to move however because I am right on the lake and love it. He says he is the sole proprietor so he can kick me out but I’m also the on the lease so I don’t see how. I’m worried because the realtor is his family friend. What should I do?

Asked on May 31, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Massachusetts


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If you are both on the lease, then legally you both have equal rights to remain on the premises. The fact is that one tenant cannot evict another; only a landord can bring an "unlawfu detainer" action (i.e. eviction lawsuit). So, unless you are in breach of the lease in some way (i.e. have not been paying your rent or have caused damage to the rental, etc.), there are no grounds upon which to evict you. Your lease must be honored.

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