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LegalKnowledge, Attorney
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I rent a room in my house that I live at and get my mail at.

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I rent a room in my house that I live at and get my mail at. The mail comes to a group of locked mail boxes up the street. My tenant is demanding the key or a copy of it. I'm not comfortable with that and would prefer she get a PO box instead of using my mail box. Can I tell her to do that without getting into legal trouble? Would the Post Office give her a key if she asked?
Hi! I will be the professional that will be helping you today. I look forward to providing you with information to help solve your problem.

Good morning. I certainly understand the situation and your concern. As a resident who legally rents the room and uses it as their primary residence, they do have a legal right to receive mail at the home. Unless there was a clause in the lease agreement, whereby they agree to obtain and pay for a PO Box, they would have a legal right to receive mail at that address and access to the mailbox. After all, they may received bills that need to be paid or other time sensitive documents and can not always rely on you or another party to obtain the mail and give it to them, in a timely manner. She likely can not go to the Post Office to get a key. The reason being is that the Post Office owns the USPS lock located usually in the middle of the bank of boxes. The individual box locks and the keys that fit them are owned by the landlord, condo association, coop, or individual condo owner. As such, she would need to make a copy of your key or obtain the key code and have a lock smith make a key for her. The key code is possible something she can obtain from the postal worker, when they open the boxes, which could reveal that code. I understand that you are not comfortable with her having a key but you can not restrict her use or access to the mailbox, since it could have a direct effect on her and what is received. You can always offer to pay for the PO Box but likely can not force to get one at this time, since it was not agreed upon in the lease, when she took possession.

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