Q: I had a tenant break lease early and refuses to pay the termination fee in the contract she signed.
There was a two week notice clause in the rental contract ($300). She up and left then said she would pay me but still is giving me the run around, what legal recourse do I have? There is also a section in the contract that states she will cover legal fees if we go to court.
A: You can sue her for breach of contract. You can sue yourself in small claims court and ask for court costs in addition. You can hire an attorney to sue for you. You may be able to collect your attorney's fees, but she may be judgement proof, meaning she may have no money or assets to go after.
A: Excellent question. Based upon the information you provided, you may have a cause of action to sue her for breach of contract/early termination. Your contractual agreement will govern whether you can seek attorney's fees. You have stated that there is a provision in the lease agreement where attorney's fees maybe granted if you have to seek court enforcement. You can file a small claims lawsuit, then have your previous tenant served and attend court to prove up your case in court. Good luck.
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