My question involves a roommate in the State of: Vermont
So my girlfriend & I moved into a house a little over a year ago (October 2009) on a one-year lease with both our names. We re-upped the lease last October, and she just told me tonight that she'll be moving in with her parents because she wants to be with someone else. We've been together for 5 1/2 years and lived together in another house together previous to this one. When we moved into this current house, we moved in with a full tank of heating fuel; and had the electric activated in my name. There's still 9 months of our lease, and the heating oil tank is currently 1/4 full.
Since she is moving out and breaking the lease with both our names on it, isn't she responsible for her half of the rent, and half of the cost to re-fill the fuel oil tank (since we've obviously used what was in there, as it needs to be filled when we move out)? I haven't spoken with my landlord yet, but him & I are good friends so I'm sure he'll amend the lease and let me stay, but I will not be looking for a roommate because this is a small one-bedroom house. I have told her that if she wants to move out, then she'll still be responsible for her half of the rent until the lease expires; and she'll be responsible for 1/2 the cost to re-fill the heating oil tank. She told me that she's going to tell our landlord shes moving out and have her name removed so she's not responsible for anything. I told her that If she tries to go this route, I'll gladly bring her to small claims court.
I'm going to speak with my landlord and let him know the situation. I'm also considering taking her house keys, as I don't want MY stuff (flatscreen TV, computers, etc) to walk with her out the door. All she has is her clothes, although we did buy some furniture together and stuff like food & other household items. Frankly, if she wants those things she can have them; but she can't have things that I purchased for myself with my own money
What leg do I have to stand on in Vermont in regards to her breaking the lease and stiffing me with 100% of the rent and the cost to re-fill the oil tank? Electric I'm not worried about because it's in my name and when she moves out she won't be using it. The heating oil WAS used to heat the house the whole time she was here, so I think any judge would side with me that she has to pay 50% of the cost to refill the tank. I'm curious about the lease though...