Westminster, CO asked in Landlord - Tenant for Colorado

Q: I don’t know what to do about my ex and about these keys? I wouldn’t they be considered abandon at this point.

My ex and I broke up in Feb due to her infidelity. We had a lease together and she walked out on it. One day I got home and all her stuff was gone. A couple months later, she went back and took her mattress and stuff. She left behind a keychain with a key on it. Our lease already ended , she knew it was ending and I have since moved out. After she moved out, I paid the lease on my own despite her name being on it. She recently texted me about it and I told her that I might have it and thought I found it but I didn’t. Now they threaten to sue if I don’t give them the key back. I don’t know what to do.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Rebecca Pescador
Rebecca Pescador
  • Westminster, CO
  • Licensed in Colorado

A: Clearly, if you are able to find the key, that would solve it.

If you cannot find the key, however, I think it will be very difficult for her to prove any liability on your part. It is easy to file a lawsuit, so she could definitely file a suit against you. Once she's filed, however, she has to be able to prove that you have some legal liability for the loss of this key. Once she's proven that you have some legal liability for the loss of the key, then she has to prove that she suffered damages that the court can create an order to compensate for as a result of the loss of the key.

Under the circumstances you describe here, it is hard to see where your legal liability would lie. She didn't entrust the key to you in any way; she simply left it behind in your space as she was moving out.

If she files suit, it will likely be a small claims court. It might be worth it at that point to find an attorney to do a consultation with to be sure you focus your answer on the most important aspects of the situation.

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