Release of contract now being sued
My son and his girlfriend had an apt and were splitting up, so the both of them went to the office and she was able to have her name removed from the lease. BUT at that time the apt manager did not have my son sign a new lease, just told him to come back, which he never did. His girlfriend was able to find another apt and the manager did fax over a letter stating she did not have a rental agreement with them anymore. Now that the apt has sued my son and he has not given them any money, they are now going after her. They are saying that since they did not put the information into the computer, that it doesn't matter she has to pay them his back rent, late fees, damages, etc. and has turned her over to collections. BUT they will not give her any information on the apt, the original contract and the new contract where she was NOT listed.
In fact they, the first apt, faxed over the letter to the new apts she moved into saying she did NOT have a contract with them.
Question is, since they dropped the ball and cannot get money from my son, can they go after her if she was released from the contract? We are telling her not to pay anything because it is their fault. We would like to know which law would pertain to this and to back her up.
My son was served to go to court and ordered to pay $1917.00, but collections told her first it was around $5300.00 and now it is up to $8000.00, in one day.
Please help, she needs it desperately, she is not at fault.
We live in Rio Rancho, NM
prplrose aka Janet
Did the case that the landlord won in court have any other party (the girlfriend) listed as a defendant at all? If not, it does not seem that the apartment can expect your son's girlfriend to make any payment that is due on a judgment that they have against your son. That just does not make any sense. Find out what is on file with the courthouse in re: that lawsuit and the judgment that the apartment won. Along that same line, if your son's girlfriend's name is not on the collection, how can the collection company go after her for payment? That does not make any sense, either. She should dispute the collection in writing (any such dispute should be in writing and proof of delivery should be kept...) and speak with an experienced attorney to get the proper legal advice. If your son's girlfriend is unsure of how to dispute a collection, the library often has books that are available to clarify how a collections dispute should be properly handled.
The court case was only against my son. I looked it up online and she is not listed as a defendant anywhere.
Thank you I will let her know this morning what else to do.
My husband and I are thinking since my son is not giving them money that they pulled her info off the original contract and now are "trying" to get their money one way or the other, even dragging her down. Which doesn't surprise us from these owners.
It will probably be worth her while to speak with an experienced attorney who practices law in the same location as the judgment was awarded. If the judgment was solely against your son and the girlfriend has proof that she was released from the lease agreement, then I do not see how she can be held responsible for the payment of money that she did not agree (by way of a lease agreement) to pay...
Let us know what you find out...
UPDATE: The collection agency was trying every which way to collect money from my son's ex gf since they could not get in touch with my son, even using the old lease. Well, good news, she talked to the apt complex and got a copy of the paper that released her from the lease, they in turn contacted the collection agency and her current apt manager to inform them that she is not the one the collection is against. So that being said, she is free and clear of this nightmare. Now my son is being pursued, but the landlord said even though he did not sign a new lease, and he was still living there, it automatically created a new lease like he signed one. Not sure on that, but hey, I'm not worried, my son can deal with that. After all, in my opinion, he does owe them, his things were in the apt, there was a lot of damage and a lot to clean up.
Thank you so much for your help and advice.