Results 1 to 5 of 5
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    2

    Default Will a Verbal Agreement Hold Up in Court

    My question involves landlord-tenant law in the State of: NY
    My lease was up 6/1/11.
    I had asked my landlord at the end of February if there would be any penalties if I broke my lease. He told me there would be no penalties. I have a witness to this. So it was agreed that he would start looking for a new tenant but I made it clear that I would stay out for the month of March since it was right around the corner.
    Come March 1st I paid my rent on time and he cashed the check immediately. Three days later, 3/3/11, I get a phone call at 2pm asking me if I could move out by Saturday 3/5/11 because he found a new tenant. The only reason I agreed to this quick move was because he told me he would reimburse me 3 weeks worth of March rent plus my security. I have a witness to this as well.
    So come that Saturday I was rushed out and complied to all requests made by the landlord. He gave me a check for my security and told me in front of my friends that he would mail me the check for the March rent after his new tenant's check cleared.
    Two weeks later he is ignoring my phone calls but I finally get a hold of him and he only wants to give me $400. My rent was $1150. He says I broke the lease and made him rush to find a new tenant.
    Why would I have paid for the entire month of March and leave 5 days later without any incentive?? I could have refused to move and stay until 3/31/11.?I know it is my fault that I have nothing in writing but I have two witnesses and the cancelled check he immediately cashed. Can I sue him?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    75,886

    Default Re: Will a Verbal Agreement Hold Up in Court

    Yes, you can sue him. It would be sensible to have your witnesses come to the court hearing.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    California
    Posts
    540

    Default Re: Will a Verbal Agreement Hold Up in Court

    It might also be helpful to find out if he actually rented out your quarters, and when the new tenant's rent started.

    One principle of breaking leases is that the landlord is only entitled to the loss he actually sustains by you breaking your lease.

    If the new tenant moved in e.g. 3/6/11 and he refunds only $400 rent, then his net income for March would be your $750 plus rent of $965 (26 days of rent) minus transition costs. So without any verbal agreement, he would have to prove transition costs of $565 in order to justify keeping $750 rent.

    That might be a good alternative argument to keep in mind as you go to court.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Will a Verbal Agreement Hold Up in Court

    He definately has a new tenant. The new tenant showed up on 3/5/11 at 9:45am. I was still packing things in boxes. I was way too nice & accommodating. The landlord rushed me out. He practically got double rent.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    California
    Posts
    540

    Default Re: Will a Verbal Agreement Hold Up in Court

    I would threaten to take him to Small Claims Court.

    The key to winning in Small Claims Court is preparation. Fortunately, the rules of evidence are relaxed there, so ordinary photocopies are OK. I suggest preparing a statement showing why you should have owed him only 4 days of tent in March, with supporting documents such as cancelled checks, phone logs, etc.. Don't give him any credit for transition costs; let him prove them.

    After you prepare these documents, give him one set, and ask for an appropriate refund. Check with local rules to findout whether you have to "serve" him, and do it that way if necessary. Give him 30 days to respond. If he does not respond, then take him to Small Claims Court.

    Also, consider buying Everybody's Guide to Small Claims Court by Ralph Warner.

    1. Sponsored Links
       

Similar Threads

  1. Debt Collectors: Verbal Agreement
    By meiyee87 in forum Debts and Collections
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 07-23-2010, 07:30 AM
  2. Business Issues: Verbal Agreement
    By HOA1 in forum Business Law
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 10-23-2009, 05:44 PM
  3. Will This Verbal Contract Hold Up
    By Skit01 in forum Cars and Dealerships
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 08-25-2009, 08:49 PM
  4. Legal Malpractice: Is a Hold Harmless Agreement in Divorce Legal
    By LaraB in forum Malpractice Law
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 07-22-2009, 06:24 AM
  5. Hold Harmless Agreement
    By dku in forum Worker's Compensation
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 04-08-2006, 05:33 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
 
Forum Sponsor
Termination Forms
Notices to end your tenancy in all 50 states.




Untitled Document