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I was the guarantor for an apartment for my daughter and her…

I was the guarantor...

I was the guarantor for an apartment for my daughter and her friend. The situation was bad and on the day the roommate was to move out there was a fire in her bedroom. My daughter heard the alarm when getting up for work. It did not spread past that bedroom but the water and smoke did. Their apt and at least one below it. The girl had 4 girls in the room, but she was out in the car with some guy. The group was drunk or high. My daughter got 3 out and the 4th the fire dept helped out. They were passed out.
The apt manager said they will divide the repairs between the two girls. It was almost 1 year ago. The weird thing was that they refunded the girls for 300+. It was on the 28th and rent was 850 a month.
The girls family did not ever feel responsible for her ..ie not paying rent and not paying my daughter back we she did.
I just have a massive gorilla on my back waiting to see how it all plays out. If the girls cant pay wont it end up at Me? And if they have to declare bankcruptcy on it does the debt then just move to Me? And how long can it take to find out cost or if they will make me pay? It was very obvious it was the roommates negligence ..was declared an accident. But was not close to a wall even. Any answers would be appreciated. Happened in Iowa in 2017.

Lawyer's Assistant: When we are ready I'll take you to the appropriate web page. What state is this in? And just to clarify, when was the purchase made?

Iowa. The fire happened on 4-28-2017.

Lawyer's Assistant: What are the terms of the lease? Any issues related to maintenance or upkeep?

No. But lease says I could be held responsible. No renters insurance.

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

And since we Paid the rent to make sure the rent was paid then the manager said it looks like all was ok. My daughter did have another renter lined up to sign papers that day.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I have called the corporate office of the apartment chain 2x. They do not get back to me
Answered in 9 minutes by:
3/16/2018
socrateaser
socrateaser, Attorney
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 40,075
Experience: Retired
Verified

Hello...you asked:

If the girls cant pay wont it end up at Me?

A: It depends on the language of the guarantee. Sometimes contract language may provide an escape from liability. Example: Let's say the guarantee covers rent, but is silent as to damage caused by tenant negligence. That would not obligate you to pay for the fire damage. But, if the guarantee is comprehensive, then you could be held liable for the negligence of the tenants.

And if they have to declare bankruptcy on it does the debt then just move to Me?

A: Yes. As guarantor, you're responsible if the principal obligor does not pay.

And how long can it take to find out cost or if they will make me pay?

A: The statute of limitations for negligence in Iowa is 2 years from the date that the cause of action accrues, which would be the date of the fire, because the landlord would have been aware of the fire immediately. However, the statute of limitations on the breach of a written contract in Iowa is 10 years. Consequently, if the type of damage caused is covered by the lease agreement, then the landlord could have a very long time to file a lawsuit.

I realize that my answer may not be exactly what you were hoping to read. However, under the circumstances, the best that I can do is to explain what the law is and is not, so that you can avoid expending valuable resources looking for answers that do not exist, and concentrate on the options that are actually available.

I hope I've answered your question. Please let me know if you require further clarification. And, please provide a positive feedback rating for my answer (click 3, 4 or 5 stars) -- otherwise, Justanswer retains your entire payment, and I receive nothing for my efforts in your behalf. Note: If you cannot find the rating button on your webpage, please just type in your rating in a response to this note, and customer service will apply the rating for you.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Thanks. I believe when I initially reread it after the fact It indicated I could be held responsible. It is just so unfair. The fire dept noticed after that someone had put a paper towel in the toaster( which was my daughter's toaster) and we discovered a knife shoved into her salsa in the refrigerator. But the investigation did not go anywhere. I want to make that girl pay all of it but realize court costs could be more than ultimately bankcruptcy will cost. Do they normally try to bill the renter? Is it common practice. It is Deerfield or Goldmark is the owner. Is there anyway you can see the info on their history and is it the insurance company or the apartment owners who will come after me

Do they normally try to bill the renter?

The landlord is obligated to seek recovery from the tenants, before resorting to the guarantor.

Is there anyway you can see the info on their history and is it the insurance company or the apartment owners who will come after me?

A: No one has this type of database. As for the owners or insurer, it depends on whether the insurer obtains subrogation for the loss. Typically, if the loss is great (>$10,000), the insurer will become the subrogee and then seek to recover from the guarantor. Otherwise, the insurer is likely to simply write it off and move on).

I hope I've answered your question. Please let me know if you require further clarification. And, please provide a positive feedback rating for my answer (click 3, 4 or 5 stars) -- otherwise, Justanswer retains your entire payment, and I receive nothing for my efforts in your behalf. Note: If you cannot find the rating button on your webpage, please just type in your rating in a response to this note, and customer service will apply the rating for you.

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Hello again,

I see that you have reviewed my answer, but that you have not provided a rating. Do you need any further clarification concerning my answer, or is everything satisfactory?

If you need further clarification, concerning this matter, please feel free to ask. If not, I would greatly appreciate a positive feedback rating for my answer (click 3, 4 or 5 stars) – otherwise, Justanswer retains your entire payment, and I receive nothing for my efforts in your behalf. Note: If you cannot find the rating button on your webpage, please just type in your rating in a response to this note, and customer service will apply the rating for you.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
It was the same thing that I have thought except for the years. PI would like to send you a copy on here of my guarantor agreement. Can I do that this evening or weekend?

Review of a lease is a bona fide legal service which cannot be performed in this forum, because Justanswer is not a law firm (it's a Q&A website). Also, as I am not licensed to practice law in Iowa, I would be unable to provide you legal services. Consequently, while I would like to assist you in the review of the lease, I regret that I may be putting my license at risk by doing so. Thus, I must respectfully ***** ***** request.

To my knowledge there are no Iowa attorneys providing answers at Justanswer. However, you can certainly post a new question and ask specifically for someone licensed in your jurisdiction.

If you need further clarification, concerning this matter, please feel free to ask. If not, I would greatly appreciate a positive feedback rating for my answer (click 3, 4 or 5 stars) – otherwise, Justanswer retains your entire payment, and I receive nothing for my efforts in your behalf. Note: If you cannot find the rating button on your webpage, please just type in your rating in a response to this note, and customer service will apply the rating for you.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Ok. Is there a set time frame before the company can garnish wages?

No wage garnishment without filing a lawsuit, trying the case and obtaining a judgment of liability for breach of contract or negligence and damages. You haven't even received a demand for payment yet, must less a summons and complaint. You can, of course try to negotiate a settlement with the landlord, before the lawyers get involved. Maybe they will accept a relatively small lump sum payment to settle the matter.

If you need further clarification, concerning this matter, please feel free to ask. If not, I would greatly appreciate a positive feedback rating for my answer (click 3, 4 or 5 stars) – otherwise, Justanswer retains your entire payment, and I receive nothing for my efforts in your behalf. Note: If you cannot find the rating button on your webpage, please just type in your rating in a response to this note, and customer service will apply the rating for you.

Thanks again for using Justanswer!

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Dear friend: I receive the rough equivalent of a Starbuck's mocha and a brownie to answer questions in this forum -- and I only get paid if you provide a positive rating and you don't later return and demand a refund.

If you need further clarification, concerning this matter, please feel free to ask. If not, I would greatly appreciate a positive feedback rating for my answer (click 3, 4 or 5 stars) – otherwise, Justanswer retains your entire payment, and I receive nothing for my efforts in your behalf. Note: If you cannot find the rating button on your webpage, please just type in your rating in a response to this note, and customer service will apply the rating for you.

Thanks again for using Justanswer!

socrateaser
socrateaser, Attorney
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 40,075
Experience: Retired
Verified
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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Sorry. I got busy at work and did not get to this last one. Of course not the answers I wanted but if confirms what I read into the contract. Except the 10 years. That is forever. But thank you.

Consider hiring a lawyer to assist you in trying to negotiate a settlement before the matter becomes adversarial.

Thanks again for using Justanswer!

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DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

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