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Dear Customer,Thank you for using our forum. My name is ***** ***** I hope to assist you today.
I am sorry to learn of your son's financial predicament.
Unfortunately, these three individuals still have a contractual obligation to the landlord for the remainder of the lease term.
If they wish to terminate the lease early they can do so, thereby attempting to limit their liability.
To do this, they can give the landlord notice that they are terminating the lease early, and ask the landlord to "mitigate their damages" by trying to find a new tenant.The landlord can hold your son and his fellow tenants responsible for the lease until: (1) the end of the lease term; or (2) the landlord finds a new tenant, whichever occurs first.
The landlord must use "good faith efforts" to find a new tenant - this would include advertising and not turning down reasonably qualified tenants.
Another option would be asking the landlord if your son and his roommates could sublease the unit so that your son could bring in two new tenants as sub-lease tenants. This of course opens your son up to a whole new type of responsibility as a "master tenant" (he is basically acting as a landlord). But it is another option.
I understand that there appears to have been a series of unfortunate events that have occurred, but these unfortunate events do not eliminate the legal liability of the tenants (in this case your son and his roommates) under their lease contract.
They can try to use the mechanisms I identified above to minimize their risk, but the landlord is not responsible for reducing rent, cancelling the lease, or otherwise excusing the tenant's performance under the contract due to the tenant's misfortune.