Questions Answered by Paula J. Mcgill

Q: Can i get out of my lease if there is server water damage and black mold on my ceelings?

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Georgia on
Answered on Jan 16, 2017

The first thing is to contact code enforcement regarding the leaking roof.

Also, have a professional mold service test the mold. Not all mold creates a health hazard.

In court, if you don't have an expert, your beliefs about the mold are irrelevant.

Once you have code enforcement come in and have the mold tested, you will be in a better position to negotiate a written termination of the lease. It is dangerous to just leave or leave on an oral agreement. Early...
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Q: Is my landlord allowed to keep my deposit for a month to month lease with no end date and balance owed

2 Answers | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Georgia on
Answered on Jan 16, 2017

You were month to month. Therefore, you were required to give 30 days notice that you were terminating the lease, unless the lease you had required more time. Some leases require the tenant to give 60 days notice.

You stated you moved November 30 giving your landlord a 30 days notice. If you moved November 30th, did you give the 30 days notice at the end of October? If you gave the notice on November 30th when you moved, did you pay for December? If not, the landlord has the...
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Q: Im a tenant and my landlord called yesterday saying ive got to vacate the premisies in a week we have a yearly lease

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Georgia on
Answered on Jan 3, 2017

Look at your lease.

Is there a provision relating to a sale?

Is there an early termination provision?

If so, how much notice is required?

If the landlord wants you out, he may have to wait until the lease termination date.

When does the lease expire?

You may need to take the lease to an attorney's office for a full examination of the contract and a discussion of your rights.
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Q: We notified tenant that 12 month lease would not be renewed at end of lease. Can tenant break lease 3 months early?

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Georgia on
Answered on Jan 3, 2017

If there isn't an early termination provision in the lease, the tenant cannot simply stop paying rent and leave.

You have to make it clear that you object to the move and intend to hold him to the full three months plus damages.

Also inform him that accepting the keys is for the sole purpose of protecting the house and does not mean the lease has terminated. Remind the tenant that the security deposit is for damages first. You don't know if there are damages to the house...
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Q: How can i get a divorce without my abusive husband signing the papers

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce, Domestic Violence and Family Law for Georgia on
Answered on Dec 19, 2016

If you cannot afford an attorney, call the county bar association in your county to see if there are local pro bono referrals.

If you don't qualify for a pro bono attorney, there may be county specific divorce forms you can complete so you can start the process. You don't need your spouse's approval to obtain a divorce.
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Q: If an upstairs tenant constantly causes leak in downstairs and knows it. And landlord has warned of consequences.

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Georgia on
Answered on Dec 19, 2016

Tell the landlord that this tenant and the landlord (by not dong anything) are violating your quite enjoyment and causing you damages. You intend to hold both of them liable for any damages, including negligence and breach of the lease. If the matter isn't handled in 10 days, you may have to take the tenant and the landlord to court.
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Q: Can I get my kids from another state or keep them and not let them go back when they come to Georgia?

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Georgia on
Answered on Dec 19, 2016

You didn't state how long the children have been in SC.

You also haven't said if you have gone to SC.

In any event, it will be quite easy if the children have been in SC less than 6 months.

In Georgia, if the parents were not married and the father hasn't legitimated the children, the mother has sole physical and legal custody of the children.

Contact a SC attorney in the county where the children are currently located to find the best option for you....
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Q: Can former landlord keep my deposit and sue me on top of that for alleged damages?

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Georgia on
Answered on Nov 8, 2016

Under the law, the security deposit is supposed to be placed in a trust account. If it is not, the security deposit cannot be withheld for damages. The exception would be if the owner did not have a management company and did not have more than 10 rental units. (See OCGA 44-7-36)

Moreover, if you sue for return of your security deposit, the judge can award you three times the wrongfully withheld deposit plus attorney's fees. If you sue in Magistrate Court and are unhappy with the...
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Q: I recently got married and my husbands ex is demanding more child support due to us being married can she do that

1 Answer | Asked in Child Support for Georgia on
Answered on Nov 5, 2016

He can asked for anything, but that doesn't mean he will actually get it.

He will probably argue that your expenses have declined as a result of being married.

If you moved into his house or apartment, your expenses have definitely declined.

It is up to the judge to hear both sides and make an assessment. This isn't a cut and dry case.

If he has a lawyer, you should think about hiring one.
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Q: Can I sue for a constructive eviction and get my rent/deposit back? Would I be awarded damages? Is it a good case?

1 Answer | Asked in Environmental and Landlord - Tenant for Georgia on
Answered on Nov 5, 2016

Based upon the facts you presented, you should be able to get out of your lease because the location is uninhabitable.

As far as the failure to disclose lead paint and asbestos in the house, that is a serious issue. Your children should be tested for lead in their systems.

Also, review your lease. Standard leases have sections for natural disasters. If there is a section that covers the hurricane, has the landlord complied with his duties under that section?
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Q: My ex- just want to put the child support money in a college account instead of giving me the money, is it legal?

1 Answer | Asked in Child Support for Georgia on
Answered on Oct 14, 2016

Unless the child support order states differently, child support is for the monthly support of the child (food, clothes, shelter). If he refuses to pay you directly, and there is a child support order, file a petition for contempt.
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Q: By Ga Law am I required to clean carpet and repaint walls in the home I'm renting my security dep is being threatened.

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant and Securities Law for Georgia on
Answered on Oct 12, 2016

If your lease requires you to clean the carpet before you leave, you have to do so. Similarly, if you changed the colors of the walls during your tenancy, the landlord may require you to return them to the original colors. Similarly, if the paint has been damaged beyond the normal wear and tear, you will have to paint the walls or be charged for it.
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Q: Can my landlord charge me for late fees if he's been accepting the monthly payments regardless?

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Georgia on
Answered on Oct 12, 2016

Look at your lease. If it is a standard lease there is a nonwaiver provision. This provision states simply because the landlord had not enforced a provision in the past does not prevent him from doing so in the future.
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Q: If the lease is up, can the landlord evict me without requesting for eviction through court?

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Georgia on
Answered on Oct 3, 2016

The landlord cannot simply put your items out of the rental property and change the locks.

First, the landlord must make a demand for possession for a date certain.

Second, if you don't leave by the deadline given to the landlord he can file a dispossessory in court.

Third, if you don't answer within 7 days of service the landlord can obtain a writ of poesssion from the court. If you don't appear in court for the scheduled hearing, the landlord can obtain a writ. If...
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Q: If you are already paying child support thru child support recovery set by them how do I go about getting set visitatio

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Child Support for Georgia on
Answered on Sep 13, 2016

He has to go through Superior Court in the county where the child resides (assuming the child is in Georgia) and legitimate the child, if that hasn't already been done. The friend can seek visitation in the same action he seeks legitimation.

Nobody has to hire a lawyer in family court matters. However, it would be wise to consult with one beforehand. After the consultation, he can make the decision about whether he should hire one for the matter.
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Q: when i take my childrens dad to court for childsupport can he ask for joint custody although he never did anything

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Child Support for Georgia on
Answered on Sep 13, 2016

He can always ask for joint custody after he legitimates the children. It does not mean he will receive it. Oftentimes, this threat is made for the sole purpose of scaring gullible mothers into not seeking child support. Get child support. The children deserve it. Moreover, even if you don't seek child support, he can always seek custody or visitation, after all he is the father. Unless he is a dangerous criminal or some other loathsome person, he can always obtain some sort of...
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Q: Help

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Georgia on
Answered on Sep 10, 2016

Read the order. If the order gives him primary physical custody, he can take the order with him, call the police, and have the police accompany him to pick up his children. Moreover, if the mother is violating the order, the brother can file a contempt action and seek to modify the current order because of the distance.
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Q: What rights does a landlord have to enter my home?

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Georgia on
Answered on Sep 10, 2016

More information is needed. If you are the landlord, why do you want to enter the rental property? If you are the tenant, why has the landlord entered the rental property? What does the lease state about the landlord's right to enter the property.
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Q: My ex husband and i have joint custody on our daughter. She's 14 now and wants to live with me. He won't let me see her.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Georgia on
Answered on Sep 7, 2016

You need to file a petition for contempt if your ex husband has failed to comply with the current visitation order, and a petition to modify custody. You should retain counsel for this matter.
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Q: How can I make sure that any back child support my kid will receive will go to him after he has turned 18?

1 Answer | Asked in Child Support for Georgia on
Answered on Sep 6, 2016

Unless the mother agrees, you cannot. BACK child support is for support the mother of your child already incurred. It has nothing to do with the fact he is 18.
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