Who is my landlord?
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Who is my landlord?
Two people are claiming to be the owner
of the property I am currently renting.
One signed a 6 months lease with me. The
other showed up with deed and current
property tax receipt. The police say
it’s a civil matter. What do I do?
Asked on March 30, 2018 under Real Estate Law, Tennessee
SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney
Answered 3 years ago | Contributor
You need to get this matter into court, so a judge can determine who is the legal owner and who you must pay. Send both a letter stating describing the situation and stating that under the circumstances, you will withhold rent until there is a court determination as to who you must pay. Send the letter some way or ways you can prove delivery. Then put the rent aside--do NOT spend it, because you will need it--and wait for one or both to bring a legal action against you (e.g. try to evict for nonpayment). Make sure you show up in court, with the money available, explain the situation to the judge, tell the judge that you have the money to deposit into court (basically to escrow it) if he/she wants, and ask the court to determine who you have to pay. If you pay the wrong person, the right one can evict you if they are not paid, too; that's you need a binding determination.
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