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Seattle Scott
Seattle Scott, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 961
Experience:  I have 25 years experience as a Washington State Real Estate Attorney
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I was living in an apartment with my now divorced wife for

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I was living in an apartment with my now divorced wife for 3 years. I moved out 4 years ago. My name was on the lease but I want to remove it. The management company says she is now also a lessee since we were married. Problem is she won't move out. They say that my name will be on the lease and I will remain responsible until she moves out. What can I do to protect myself and get off the lease? Our divorce agreement did include a "hold harmless" clause for the apartment.

I am in San Francisco.

Dear Customer, My name is XXXXX XXXXX my goal is to provided you with Excellent Service, but need a bit more information, if you do not mind,



1. How many years was the lease term ?



2. Had the lease term expired at the time you moved out ?



3. Did the lease itself have an automatice renewal clause for an additional term if no notice of termination was given at the time the lease expired ?



Thank you and I look forward to your reply,




Customer: replied 3 years ago.
One year then month to month.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
See? This is whats wrong with this site. Where did she go? I've been waiting hours. Why? No explanation. Just AWOL.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Relist: Incomplete answer.
Dont make me wait after the first response set up different expectations. Sheeesh
It is probably a year to year lease that auto-renews if not terminated by either side 30- 90 days before each year term. Just send the management company a letter now saying you do not consent to any lease renewal beyond the present term and that you have giving notice of lease termination to be effective at the end of the present term. Finally say you have no objection to the management company entering into a new lease with the present occupant.

What is the situation between and your ex regarding the security/damage deposit - who gets it?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
At this point, I dont care. I just want to have no liability. Would I be safe then?
Yes, you would be safe, assuming your ex paid the rent etc. through the current lease term. Send the letter regular mail and certified.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
No, that is the point. I do not want to be liable no matter what she does. Impossible? Until she moves out? Or does my hold harmless clause work 100%?
You are jointly liable with your ex until you terminate your participation in the lease, during the period that the lease can be terminated - not renewed. I am assuming it is a year to year lease, or it could be a 6 month lease. She might stay there 5 more years, but during that time there are renewal/termination rights every 6 month or a year. You just want to give notice that you are not renewing when the current term is up. You will be jointly liable until until the termination notice becomes effective.

The hold harmless is enforceable, but if you get in the situation where you are trying to enforce it, it means she defaulted on her tenant obligations - so she probably doesn't have the money to reimburse you for anything you are out to the landlord. So it is not a 100% remedy.
Seattle Scott, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 961
Experience: I have 25 years experience as a Washington State Real Estate Attorney
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