I rented a home to a National Guard soldier who was leaving to go to Columbus Ga. for training. He was desperate to get his wife settled because their well had run day and he needed to get his family settled before he left. I leased a very nice brick home to them for $1075.00 per month. Because he was a soldier and appeared to be so sincere, I only got a small $300 deposit. They paid the first month's rent and then told me that the Military would be sending the payment each month thereafter out of his housing allowance. The payment never came and his wife moved out. They owe me 2 months rent totaling $2,150. I have contacted the National Guard Laison but seem to be getting the run-around. I have a signed lease. Please advise. I am a retired person and really need this money. I just want the 2 months rent that they owe for living in the house those 2 month. The utilities were still in their name so I can prove that his family was there. Please advise.
State/Country relating to question: Georgia
I have contacted the National Guard Laison who directed me to Troop C, 3rd of the 108th Calvary, 4115 S. Airport Road, Atlanta, Ga. 30335 XXX-XXX-XXXX. This person there referred me to a Sargeant Hatcher XXX-XXX-XXXX and he told me that all they could do was to ask the soldier to pay. He said they could not make him pay. I want to know if there is any way to have an Order to pay debt or disciplinary action noted in his record. I would at least like to talk with the soldier. Hiw wife told me that the National Guard Laison instructed her not to speak to me. Of course, the wife has moved and I do not know where she is living. I am so disappointed in this soldier. I even had this soldier on our prayer list at Church and still do. Why does the National Guard not hold their soldiers to a higher standard. I was told that a copy of the lease is on file with their Fiance Office....but what good does that do. Thank you.
I'm very sorry to hear about this. This is not how we expect service-members to act.The offense he has committed is "failure to pay just debts" under Article 134, UCMJ.Also, he was potentially untruthful with you about the payment. They only make the payment direct to you if he completed what's called an allotment of pay form. It seems that he didn't do this.In Georgia you have a Magistrate's Court which acts as a small claims court.Unfortunately the best way to do this is to file a claim in that court. You can claim the lease amount minus the deposit, the costs of collecting the money from him (include the $30.00 you paid here to seek guidance on this website), and any damages he may have caused to the property before moving out. I'm not sure you can claim interest on the money not paid.You will need the lease and the utility bills as "proof."Once you have a court order, then you can submit the documentation to the Defense Finance & Accounting Service and to his unit commander for payment and potential garnishment.Also, I would recommend you contact the Inspector General for the Georgia National Guard. When you talk to him tell him that you are legitimately owed money, that you are now cautious about renting to military people in the future, and this gives a very bad and service discrediting picture to the civilian community.I'm sorry to say this all may take some time and effort.Again, on behalf of the many many respectable serving and retired servicemembers you have our apologies.Sincerely.
33 years military law experience.
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