What law applies to one tenant losing their share of the deposit if they break their lease?

UPDATED: Jun 10, 2011

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What law applies to one tenant losing their share of the deposit if they break their lease?

My roommate broke our lease, which states any person not on the lease who stays over 15 days pays $15 every day stayed after said period. She had her boyfriend move in without consulting the other 2 roommates and didn’t have him pay anything for the 5 months they both were there. She also left all her furniture which then became my responsibility to get rid of when Imoved out sinIe i was the last one. I’m looking to find a reason she can’t fight so that Ican keep her share of the $2,200 deposit in lieu of her boyfriend owing over $2,000 and her not emptying her room.

Asked on June 10, 2011 under Real Estate Law, California


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

I think that you should take your lease to an attorney in your area for a consultation on the matter.  Are you all on the lease agreement?  Individually? And the security deposit clause?  How is it worded?  Generally speaking her portion paid of the security deposit is not yours.  It is hers based upon her agreement with the landlord.  If you all had to pay for extra rent because she breached the lease (and you were all held labile) then you need to sue her for that money.  Also, I am worried about what you did with her possessions.  Unless you had something in writing indicating that she had abandoned the belongings you could be held liable for selling or getting rid of it.  Seek consultation.  Good luck.

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