What are the legal proceedings if a roommate who is not and was not on the lease, leaves their belongings behind and does not pick them up?

UPDATED: Mar 6, 2012

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What are the legal proceedings if a roommate who is not and was not on the lease, leaves their belongings behind and does not pick them up?

My roommate was supposed to leave a the end of last month. He has not paid rent for this month and claims that he has no money to pay for gas to come back and move the items or pay for someone else to move them. He left a substantial amount of belongings–so many that there was no room for the new renter to move his own belongings in. Should I send him a notice that we will throw away the property in 30 days? What can I legally do?

Asked on March 6, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Missouri


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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

So I am guessing that you are on the lease and that you sublet the room?  He is a tenat.  You have admitted that in the way that you wrote the question: he has not paid rent.  Who is his landord is the question and if you violated the ease by sub leasing is another question.  In a andlord tenant situation you would have to file an eviction proceeding and give the order of eviction to the sheriff or marshall to clean out his stuff.  Otherwise, you could be sued for conversion should you touch it.  Good luck.

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