A member asked over 7 years ago

Domestic tenancy dispute

My partner is getting hounded by a real-estate agent because their ex-partner still hasn't removed their belongings from the property, and handed the keys in, despite the lease having ended already. My partner has moved all of their stuff and has totally vacated the property. A summons has been served to appear in court, because of their supposed ongoing tenancy of the property, despite them not living there anymore. I'd like to know what can be done so that they are no longer apart of the lease and involved in this matter. Thanks.

Law Advisor Research Team
Researchers at LawAdvisor

Hi there. If your partner signed the tenancy agreement as a co-tenant with their ex-partner, the law will recognise both parties as responsible for the lease until they legally terminate the tenancy or transfer it to another person.

If your partner removed their name from the lease when they moved out of the property by transferring their share to a new tenant or the remaining tenant, then your partner is unlikely to be responsible for any future matters regarding the property. However, if they did not remove their name from the tenancy, simply moving out of the premises will not automatically end their obligations as a tenant.

The simplest way for your partner to end their involvement is to negotiate with the real estate agency or landlord, explaining the situation and asking that the matter be pursued solely with your partner’s ex-partner. Although the agency does not have to agree to your request, they do have the power to withdraw any legal proceedings they may have commenced in court or at the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal. If the negotiation is unsuccessful, your partner should be prepared to attend the court or tribunal hearing and present any oral or documentary evidence that supports their side of the story.

Suggested way forward

Your partner would benefit from speaking to a property lawyer who can advise them of their legal rights and the best course of action. By pressing the “Consult a Lawyer” button, LawAdvisor can help you search for experienced lawyers and obtain fee proposals for their services. Costs for legal advice and representation will vary between providers based on experience and the scope of services.

Answered over 7 years ago   Legal disclaimer


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