Hi, thank you for asking your question today. The other Experts and I are working on your answer. By the way, it would help us to know:- Is you friend on the lease ?
- Was the landlord aware that you moved out
- Did you return your keys to the landlord
- did you have a lease agreement with you friend (between the 2 of you either written or oral).
- what was the lease term; when does t expire.
Only an attorney may file legal documents on behalf of another person. The financial company must have an attorney file documents on your behalf with the court. Filed documents would have the attorney's signature on them. In answering the unlawful detainer an attorney must have submitted the documents to the court.
Since both of your names were on the lease an action for unlawful detainer must have been directed at both you and your friend. Your friend must have received an unlawful detainer complaint. It does not make any sense just to evict one of you and not the other.
With respect to damages you are both liable for the full amount of damages. It is not up to the landlord to decide who actually pays the damages. If your friend by his actions created more charges for you, you must sue your friend to get your money back.
Any document your friend signed that you were responsible for are not binding on you. It may however be binding on your friend.
An action for unlawful detainer is an action to have possession of the rental returned to the landlord. Since you were already moved out this should not have had an impact on you. Since your friend did not move out this does have an impact on you financially because the lease is in both your names.
With respect to whether a crime has been committed. Falsifying a signature on a legal document is criminal fraud. The damages resulting from the fraud and signing documents are your friend's to pay.
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