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If My Roommate Stops Paying Rent, Am I on the Hook for It?

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Q: In 2020, I lived in a three-bedroom apartment with two roommates. We all signed the lease, but each of us paid portions of the security deposit directly to the landlord. We also the paid the rent in three separate checks. During the pandemic, one roommate moved back home and stopped paying rent, while the other roommate and I stayed through the end of the lease and paid our portions of the rent on time. When we moved out at the end of the lease, we left the apartment in good condition, but when it came time to get our security deposit back, the landlord withheld the money on account of our former roommate. Can the landlord do this? What are my legal options to recoup my portion of that money?

A: When you and your roommates signed the lease, all of you assumed responsibility for the terms of the agreement, so all of you are on the hook for anything that goes wrong. If someone damaged the walls or painted a room turquoise without permission, you would…

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