Somerville, MA asked in Collections, Landlord - Tenant and Small Claims for Massachusetts

Q: Can a person sue me for non-payment after refusing to give me the bill?

After a break up I spent some time living with my Nana. Our agreement was I’d work in lieu of rent in her shop, but pay utilities in the house I occupied since it’s normally empty. The utilities were in her name. After events ranging from abusive, to manipulative, to straight out slanderous I decided to cut ties after she called my ex and told him I hadn’t paid any bills so he should send her rent money because she, “took [me] off [his] hands.” What she was unaware of was my ex paid all my bills because I also continued to work in a company that we own together, so he knew that was a lie and told me. When addressed she basically said I had no right to be upset. I decided to leave in April 2020. When she found out I intended to leave she instead kicked me out in March, so I wasn’t able to receive the bill from March. I’ve asked for it many times (over text because I don’t trust talking to her without proof) but she refused to give it to me, and now is threatening to sue.

1 Lawyer Answer
Christopher Tolley
Christopher Tolley
  • Collections Lawyer
  • Boston, MA
  • Licensed in Massachusetts

A: You appear to understand and agree that you owe the bill for March. However, if you do not know the amount to pay, you cannot pay it. Your Nana would have to show you knew the amount you had to pay, that she asked you for the money, and you refused to pay.

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